SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — To help diminish gang violence in schools, state Rep. Chuck Jefferson, D-Rockford, voted for legislation last week permitting the sharing of information between schools and law enforcement regarding weapons and gang activity.
“Over the years, I have joined forces with crime prevention and violence intervention groups such as CeaseFire, Weed and Seed, law enforcement and neighborhood watch groups to proactively strengthen our neighborhoods,” Jefferson said. “By supporting this legislation, we are granting our communities another tool to use to protect themselves and diffuse situations that could potentially escalate into tragedies.”
House Bill 2768 requires school principals to contact law enforcement agencies when school safety is threatened by weapons or gang activity. Additionally, law enforcement officials must notify school principals if a student has been arrested for gang activity.
“This bill increases communication and emphasizes the importance of working together as partners to keep our schools safe from gang violence,” Jefferson said. “Schools should be a safe place for learning and growing, not a terrifying place for students, teachers and staff.”
H.B. 2768 passed the House with bipartisan support, and now awaits action in the Senate. For more information, contact Jefferson’s full-time constituent service office at (815) 987-7433.
From the April 24-30, 2013, issue