To the editor:
As the female 80th District leader, it is my duty to respond on the safety of our children in public schools.
The city council is proposing to transfer school safety agents back to the education department. This is a very dangerous and irresponsible act of negligence. In no way should we be going backward.
The school safety agents used to belong to the education department, and it’s already been proven disastrous.
As a former education department parent coordinator, mother and grandmother of children that attended public schools, I believe this would be detrimental. I can tell you that it’s the wrong choice in times of crisis and uncertainty. Taking this direction is leaving parents without peace of mind when their children are at school.
Some 70 percent of school safety agents are Black and Latina women. The vast majority live in the neighborhoods in which they work. They do not carry firearms or chemical agents — only hugs, love and encouragement.
They are the front line of action in times of trouble, and they are the first line of defense to give protection and safety to our students, schools and parents.
This push of legislation will put 1.1 million children at risk, which is why these plans need to be stopped in their tracks. It’s time for all who believe in the safety for all New York City children to roll up their sleeves and fight for this cause.
When my children were in high school with the school safety agents under the old education board, there was no control of guns, drugs, gangs and disobedience.
Under the New York Police Department, there is safety for children, parents and staff members — from dealing with a crisis to lockdowns, to strangers coming into school, or children having emergencies.
School safety agents under the NYPD are trained, background checked, and carry themselves professionally to respect, serve and protect the children.
Removing school safety agents from the NYPD is the wrong choice. I stand with school safety under the NYPD.