AFT President Randi Weingarten Reiterates Calls for Action after Texas School Shooting
WASHINGTON—American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten issued the following statement after reports confirmed at least four people were injured in a school-based shooting in Arlington, Texas:
“Every day across this country—in cities, suburbs and rural communities—Americans fall victim to gun violence. It is a gut-wrenching and horrific reality of our society, and the time for action is long-overdue. Gun violence is a public health crisis, a moral epidemic and a scourge on our very way of life, whether it happens on our streets, in our houses of worship, in our workplaces or in our schools. It doesn’t happen in other countries, and we must work to end it here.
“Our hearts break for the Arlington, Texas, community and everyone affected by this tragedy. We thank the educators, administrators and law enforcement officers who were present in the building for their swift action in evacuating students and staff, and we recommit to our ongoing effort to make our schools and communities safe—through red-flag laws so school staff can identify and treat warning signs of violence, background checks, safe-storage laws and programs that support student mental health.
“Just last month, a law went into effect in Texas that permits anyone over the age of 21 to carry a firearm in public without a permit or training. Make no mistake, laws like this put our kids, our families and all of us at risk. We must get serious about gun violence prevention and gun safety before more people are injured and more lives are lost.”
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The AFT represents 1.7 million pre-K through 12th-grade teachers; paraprofessionals and other school-related personnel; higher education faculty and professional staff; federal, state and local government employees; nurses and healthcare workers; and early childhood educators.