School Safety Big Concern For Ohio, Nation
By Rep. Ryan Smith (R-Bidwell)
April 08, 2013
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At the beginning of the year, Republicans in the Ohio House introduced a set of 10 bills that expressed our priorities for the upcoming legislative session. The bills covered a broad range of issues, including tax reform, job creation and healthcare—issues that impact everyone at some point in their lives.

But one bill addressed a subject that has been in the news a lot lately and one that touches many families on a personal level. Some time has passed since the shooting in Newtown, Connecticut and even more time since the tragic events in Chardon, Ohio. But the memories are still vivid for those families and anyone with young kids could not help but think about how those parents must have felt.

House Bill 8 was crafted to analyze and possibly revise school safety laws in Ohio. To accomplish this, we want to take into account as many different perspectives as possible before settling on any particular set of reforms. To this point there have been no committee hearings on this bill, so I would like to encourage residents of the 93rd District to share their ideas and concerns with my office. Your feedback is always helpful.

This subject often leads into discussions about gun control. Like many people in the district, I am a firm believer in our Second Amendment right to bear arms and will not support measures that infringe on those rights. I believe we can find common sense solutions without curtailing the ability for responsible citizens to own guns. Restricting gun ownership, in my opinion, oftentimes makes us less safe.

There are a number of other things—with nothing to do with guns—that should be addressed in order to make our schools safer for students, teachers and faculty. As this bill is further vetted in committee, I’m confident that we will learn more about what we can do to make Ohio schools a safe environment for all.

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