Washington, D.C. (Aug. 23, 2018) — OCA – Asian Pacific American Advocates opposes a proposal to allow the usage of federal funds to purchase guns for educators.
The New York Times reported Aug. 22 that U.S. Sec. of Education Betsy DeVos is considering a proposal to allow schools to purchase guns using federal funds. Through a loophole in the Student Support and Academic Enrichment grants in the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), the Education Department would be able to consider gun purchases as part of improving school conditions for campus safety. Funding from these grants is traditionally intended for mental health services, bullying in schools, and other services that are crucial to successful student education.
“It is unconscionable for Secretary DeVos to consider funding the purchase of guns on school campuses in the aftermath of the terrible shootings in our schools. Diverting already limited resources away from textbooks, supplies, and programming that actually make a campus climate safer undermines the integrity and responsibility that the Department and Congress have to students and their education. Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders make up 2.4 million of the enrolled students in K-12 education and experience the highest percentage of bullying and harassment based on race,” said Vicki Shu, OCA National Vice President of Public Affairs. “The increased presence of weapons around our children will only increase fear for students, educators, and families. We urge Secretary DeVos to reconsider moving forward with this ill-advised proposal.”
OCA – Asian Pacific American Advocates is a national organization of community advocates dedicated to the social, political, and economic well-being of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPIs.)