SASSER: SB447, “An act concerning the phase-out of the use of school resource officers” would make our school children less safe

Submitted by Patrick Sasser, Stamford

Dear Editor,

As the long session in the state legislature continues on, another extreme bill advances under the radar.  Senator Winfield of New Haven deserves credit for the directness of his bill, SB447, entitled “An act concerning the phase-out of the use of school resource officers”.  That is where the credit should end. In a time of rising violence, this bill would make our school children less safe—all because of a knee-jerk dislike of police.

I remember a time not so long ago when parents and teachers were crying out to have police officers in our schools to protect our children.  These officers are not only on the school grounds as a layer of protection but also to provide an opportunity for children to interact with police officers on a daily basis. It gives them the reassurance that police officers are human and part of our community, and that they play an important role in our society. 

Bill 447 should never become law.  Once again, Democrats in the state government are overreaching by taking the power away from our municipalities.  The decision to have officers in schools should be left to local leaders and local board of Education officials.  Every school district is unique and may have different needs. Our state should always avoid one-size-fits-all impositions—and especially when it comes to the safety of our schools. 

I encourage people to look up this bill, and every bill, that their State Representatives and State Senators are introducing and voting on in Hartford. It may help you to make an educated decision before voting them into office in 2022. And in the meantime, contact your elected officials to urge them to oppose bad bills like this one. Even a small number of vocal constituents can make a difference.