GOP lawmakers approve measures dealing with guns and students

Republican lawmakers have approved two bills dealing with guns and students, with Gov. Katie Hobbs likely to veto one, if not both of them.|| Deposit Photos (modified)

By Bob Christie and Howard Fischer || Capitol Media Services  April 11, 2023

Republican lawmakers sent two measures dealing with guns and students to Gov. Katie Hobbs on Tuesday, likely courting one veto, if not two.

The House voted along party lines to allow a parent who has a state-issued permit to carry a concealed weapon to bring it on to a school campus where he or she has children enrolled. SB 1331 already had been approved by the Senate.

Separately, the Senate approved HB 2332, which would require public district and charter schools to provide students in grades 6 through 12 with “age appropriate” training in firearms safety.

That legislation, however, does not involve any actual instruction on how to operate weapons or hunting education. Instead, it is being promoted at teaching “simple, easy-to-remember steps so individuals who receive the training know what to do if they ever come across a firearm.”

It already has been approved by the House.

Senate supporters of the measure, sponsored by Rep. Selina Bliss, R-Prescott, argued that education is the best way to cut down accidental shootings by children who stumble across firearms.

“When we’re talking about gun safety the best way to maintain a safe environment with a firearm is for education to be provided,” said Sen. Janae Shamp, R-Surprise. “There are no stories of guns going off by themselves. They go off because they have been touched by a human hand.”

Republican Sen. John Kavanagh of Fountain Hills criticized those who opposed the measure by implying it involved hands-on training with guns, which it does not.

“It’s safety training. It’s a prevention program,” Kavanagh said. “This is about training kids what to do when they stumble upon a firearm which may be loaded, so they don’t pick it up so they don’t discharge it accidentally.”

Sen. Christine Marsh, D-Phoenix, called the legislation “yet another unfunded mandate that takes time that could be invested in academics.”

Senate, House, guns, Hobbs, veto, schools, parents

And Sen. Anna Hernandez, D-Phoenix, said lawmakers would be better focused on preventing gun violence in the first place rather than “culture wars” issues.

“Every week we see a new shooting either in a school or in a public place,” she said.

“And yet time after time, we have the opportunity to introduce legislation that will actually keep our children safe, like red flag laws or safe storage laws or universal background checks,” Hernandez said. “I feel that if we’re serious about keeping our kids safe in schools, we should be looking at those measures of legislation and not worry about what books are going to be banned in schools or drag story hour.”


Share this!

Additional Articles

News Categories

Get Our Twice Weekly Newsletter!

* indicates required

Rose Law Group pc values “outrageous client service.” We pride ourselves on hyper-responsiveness to our clients’ needs and an extraordinary record of success in achieving our clients’ goals. We know we get results and our list of outstanding clients speaks to the quality of our work.