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Pennsylvania Senator Pushing For Teachers To Carry Firearms

PITTSBURGH (NewsRadio1020 KDKA) - State Sen. Don White (R-Indiana), presented the Senate Education Committee with a bill that would allow teachers, and other school staff members to bring their guns to work. Sen. White's bill says upon obtaining licensing and certification school district staff would be able to carry firearms in school buildings. This bill is in response to incidents such as the Franklin Regional High School stabbing.

Not all school district have the luxury of having regional police located in a close vicinity to the school grounds. Some districts would have to rely on State Police to respond to emergency situations, where minutes matter.

Lou Gentile, CSI Corporate Security and Investigations, has developed programs to help train school districts on how to deal with emergency situations and thinks Sen. White's bill will do little to no good.

"I think on the surface of it this is the most purely thought out piece of legislation by someone who obviously doesn't have his thumb on the pulse of reality," Gentile said. "The fact that an active shooter is the most outrageous, most terrifying thing that can happen is without a doubt but, it is the least frequent activity, but we still have to deal with it."

Gentile gives the example of the criteria in the legislation to obtain the permit show how poorly thought out the bill is. He says even if the teachers or staff complete the training mandatory by the legislation, it is still missing the key component.

"There is a physiological and psychological component to drawing that weapon. You know you can't go to school and be prepared to be able to deal with your students and then all of a sudden be expected to pull that firearm and react instinctively," Gentile said.

Gentile's company has programs in place that schools can utilize to prepare themselves for different emergency situations. He thinks that whether school districts pick his programs or others that are like his, it doesn't matter because they would be doing more to be prepared than this bill would ever cover.

"This is absolutely feel good, it's absolutely political grandstanding. I mean, there are programs out there, that I don't want to get into the programs that we promote. I don't want to self-promote, but I will tell you that there are prevention programs out there that are effective programs that teachers are involved in that have adequate emergency response plans," Gentile said.

You can hear the whole interview with Lou Gentile here now.

Arming Teachers

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