The New York State Troopers Police Benevolent Association (PBA) has been advocating for the reinstatement of the School Resource Officer (SRO) program for rural school districts since last year and is encouraged by recent support from New York state legislators on this issue.
Late last week, Sen. Patrick Gallivan, chairman of the Crime Victims, Crime and Correction Committee, sent a letter to the senate leadership requesting that funding be included in the 2018-2019 budget for SROs. The letter was co-signed by more than 20 senators.
“The PBA has again and again asked for increased manpower in the ranks of New York State Troopers in order to better protect rural school districts. In light of the recent tragedy in Florida, we believe this issue has greater urgency,” Mungeer said. “We wholeheartedly implore the New York State Legislature to act on this issue, and we thank Senator Gallivan for spearheading these efforts.”
On Jan. 30, 2018 Mungeer testified during the Public Safety portion of the New York State Joint Legislative Public Hearings and explained the need for reinstating the SRO program as part of his overall request for funding for 500 additional Troopers in the form of two Academy classes of 250 recruits.
“I fear that some of our schools are inadequately protected from threats such as deranged gunmen or lone wolf terrorists,” Mungeer said. “In my role with the PBA and as the father of children in high school, I believe that an increased presence of uniformed Troopers will increase law enforcement visibility and act as a deterrent for those who want to do harm.”