On Wednesday lawmakers will consider arming campus police at Rhode Island College and the Community College of Rhode Island. The University of Rhode Island armed campus police in 2015.
The bill would mandate the arming of campus police at all state colleges and universities. The legislation comes amid a growing debate about arming school personnel, after recent, deadly shootings at places like Florida’s Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.
Representatives from both Rhode Island College and CCRI said the schools were not consulted before the legislation was introduced. But they expect to attend the hearing and provide testimony. The officials declined to say whether they support the bill.
When the University of Rhode Island moved to arm campus police officers, there was pushback from some professors and students, who said more guns would not make campus safer. But university officials said it would enable campus police to respond more quickly to some emergency situations.