As we continue to see gun violence increase in frequency across the country, it leaves lawmakers scrambling to find solutions. One Indiana Representative has authored a bill to train teachers to use handguns.

Gun Ownership in the US

The United States has the highest rate of gun ownership in the world, according to World Population Review, a peer review journal with no known political affiliations. They say there are 390 million guns owned in the United States. That equates to more guns than people, as the US has a population of approximately 334 million.

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Gun Violence in Schools

Gun violence in schools is a growing trend and the statistics are horrifying. Since 1970, in states like California and Texas, the number of school shootings are in the triple digits. In Illinois, that number is smaller with 65 shootings since 1970 and in Kentucky, there have been just over a dozen. Here in the Hoosier State, the statistic is 24. That's how many shootings have taken place on the grounds of K-12 educational facilities.

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No Easy Solution

The solution to gun violence in schools is a subject that leaves many divided. However, Indiana Republican Representative Jim Lucas has authored a bill that would mandate handgun training for educators and other school staff.

House Bill 1177

House Bill 1177 would authorize funding to be utilized from other allocations like the Indiana Safe Schools fund and Indiana Secured Schools Fund. In addition, it would provide counseling services for those impacted in the event of a school shooting, including teachers, students, and school staff. In part, House Bill 1177 reads,

Authorizes funds from the: (1) Indiana safe schools fund; (2) Indiana secured schools fund; and (3) school corporation and charter school safety advance program; to be used for the purpose of providing specialized firearms instruction to certain teachers, school staff, and school employees, and for providing counseling services to students, teachers, school staff, and school employees in the event of a school shooting. Requires a charter school, nonpublic school, or school corporation to ensure that a teacher, school staff member, or school employee who receives a grant from the Indiana safe schools fund for the purpose of receiving specialized firearms instruction complies with certain requirements.

House Bill 1177 will go before the Education Committee on Wednesday, February 8, 2023.

[Source: Wold Population Review; iga.in.gov]

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