More Resources for School Mental Health and Commonsense Gun Laws Needed, Says AFSA President Ernest Logan

Our thoughts and prayers go out to the Saugus High School students and their families who experienced the violent incident today, especially those who were shot. We are heartbroken when any student dies or is injured.

We join hands with the entire Santa Clarita community after another senseless school shooting. AFSA and its members grieve with you and we promise to work every day to prevent further gun violence in schools.

Sadly, today’s tragic incident comes just one week after the Secret Service’s National Threat Assessment Center released a report on school shootings that concluded  “the majority of these incidents are preventable.” AFSA agrees.

For more than a decade, we have advocated for legislation that supports appropriate mental health services to help identify and treat students who are at risk for perpetrating acts of school gun violence, just as the Secret Service recommended. Yet nothing has happened. In fact, equitable access to mental health resources in schools remains a serious issue.  This cannot continue.

And while we know mental health services are important, we are not naive to think that services alone will solve the problem; that is why we have pushed for commonsense gun laws that set limits on the sale and/or transfer of guns to minors. This needs to happen.

Our children should not fear going to school every day; they should be excited to learn and have the opportunity to grow. When I walk in school hallways and hear students tell me they don’t want to be shot in their classrooms, it makes me feel that we as a nation have failed the next generation.

Until we stand together, we will never solve this problem. It is past time for action.