Uvalde school shooting: Gov. Abbott requests special campus safety panel, but some say more needed

Daniela Hurtado Image
Thursday, June 2, 2022
Gov. Abbott requests special committee to examine school safety
A week after one of the deadliest school shootings in the nation's history Governor Greg Abbott is calling for special legislative committees to study school safety.

AUSTIN, Texas (KTRK) -- A week after one of the deadliest school shootings in the nation's history, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott is calling for special legislative committees to study school safety.

In a news release on Wednesday morning, Gov. Abbott called on the Texas legislative leaders to convene special legislative committees to examine and develop recommendations on school safety, mental health, social media, police training, and firearm safety.

"As Texans mourn the tragedy that occurred at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde last week, we as a State must reassess the twin issues of school safety and mass violence," Abbott wrote. "As leaders, we must come together at this time to provide solutions to protect all Texans. Accordingly, I hereby request that each of you convene a special legislative committee. I look forward to working with you both on this important mission to make Texas safer, and I stand ready to provide any and all support."

Ovidia Molina, president of the Texas State Teachers Association, fired back, though. She called the governor's move "very weak." She says a gunman killed 19 children and two teachers with a rifle at an elementary school and the governor's response was to appoint more committees to study school safety.

COMPLETE COVERAGE: The Uvalde school shooting

"The victims' families and all Texans deserve better than that," Molina said. "Committees and other groups have studied school safety before, including after the Santa Fe High School shootings in 2018 and the El Paso Walmart shootings in 2019."

Molina says legislators and the governor refuse to address the enactment of reasonable gun laws to keep guns out of the hands of people they say shouldn't have them.

"Something has to change and that's what we're calling for," Molina said. "It's a cop-out. It's saying you're thinking about it, that you're probably going to do something about it, but it's not saying that you will do something about it."

State senators like Houston's Carol Alvarado are calling on an emergency special legislative session to address the issues and bring about change now and not in half a year when the session is happening.

"We don't need any more paper. We don't need any more reports or roundtables. We need action. We need a special session now," Sen. Alvarado said . "We have been asking for a handful of things including raising the age to 21. Some are saying none of these laws could have prevented, but this person, when he turned 18, went out and bought all these weapons. So that could have been prevented."

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