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Ohio to Allow Teachers to Carry Guns Onsite

This week the Senate of Ohio passed a bill that would let teachers and other staff carry guns in schools if they complete a 24-hour firearms training course. The bill was proposed after a number of mass shootings; the governor of the state of Ohio Mike DeWine has said that he will sign it.

The governor argues that the law proposal would keep students and teachers safe. DeWine said that the bill was meant to: “remove hundreds of hours of curriculum irrelevant to school safety and to ensure training requirements were specific to a school environment and contained significant scenario-based training.”

At the moment, if a teacher wants to carry guns (s)he must become a peace officer - and an applicant would require over 700 hours of training; however, the recently passed bill would reduce the requirement by over 90%.

The bill has the support of conservative legislators, as they say that it would allow schools to enact their own safety rules and help to deter criminals. Thomas Hall said that: “In emergency situations at our schools, seconds matter and tragedies can be prevented.”

The law proposal does not stop schools from requesting further training in order to carry firearms, nor does it stop schools from deciding not to have armed people on-site. Those that want to carry arms would need to go through a yearly criminal background check.

Meanwhile, Democratic legislators are against the law proposal; the minority leader of the House of Representatives of Ohio Allison Russo claimed that allowing teachers to carry guns in schools would be “irresponsible, reckless, and dangerous.” She lambasted her GOP colleagues for prioritizing “shoot-first laws,” instead she would prefer that conservatives support thorough background checks and firearm safety measures.

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