Bill would allow Alabama teachers to carry firearms

Bill would allow Alabama teachers to carry firearms

MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - State Rep. Will Ainsworth, R-Guntersville, will introduce a bill into legislation allowing some public-school teachers and administrators to be armed at school.

According to Ainsworth, the bill will allow Alabama public school teachers and administrators to undergo firearms training, arming themselves against attacks during school.

"Our children are sitting ducks in gun-free schools, and as the parent of three public school students, I believe we must act now in order to prevent another tragedy," Ainsworth said.  "With roughly two-thirds of the regular session remaining, there is ample time to research, introduce, pass, and enact this much-needed and potentially life-saving legislation,"

Ainsworth said the decision came shortly after the news of a Florida high school shooting Wednesday. Educators in his area asked him to introduce the legislation allowing them to protect themselves.

Ainsworth compared the proposal to undercover air marshals who can be armed to protect passengers on commercial airplanes. He said he is researching the issue but believes the legislation will likely allow schools to designate specific employees to undergo training. Those employees would have access to concealed weapons during instructional hours.

"More gun control will not stop someone who is intent upon inflicting harm in our schools, but someone who is properly trained and armed with the right equipment certainly can," Ainsworth said.  "It is my hope that passage of this legislation can be fast-tracked once it has been introduced,"

With this particular piece of legislation, Ainsworth believes the potential threat of something like the Florida high school shooting could be drastically reduced.

"I think it's going to stop gunmen that come into schools, if for some reason they break through the checkpoints we already have, we;re going to have the potential for teachers to defend our kids and to fight back," said Ainsworth.

Ainsworth mentioned that part of the bill would require any teacher wanting to be armed to be APOST certified by law enforcement.

Copyright 2018 WSFA 12 News. All rights reserved.