FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: March 26, 2004
Schumer: New Doj Grants Will Pay For Additional Officers In Local Schools
Schumer:"Cops in Schools" program will send $125,000 each to Cortland, Ogdensburg and Village of East Aurora and over $214,000 to Chenango County
Part of Schumer's 1994 Crime Bill, grants pay for "school resource officers" to patrol schools
US Senator Charles Schumer, author of the 1994 Crime Bill, today announced that several New York school districts will receive federal grants under the bill’s Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) program. The money will be used to hire community police officers to be placed within the city’s school system. Schumer said that grants worth $125,000 will go to Cortland, the Village of East Aurora and Ogdensburg to hire one officer each and $214,896 will go to Chenango County to hire two officers.
“Unfortunately we live in a different world now than we did twenty, thirty, or even two years ago," Schumer said. "Keeping our children safe has always been a concern, but as parents it's something we are always thinking about now. Getting more police officers on school grounds will go a long way towards making sure our kids stay out of harm's way." The COPS program makes awards to counties, cities or towns for a three year period, and pays a total of $125,000 over three years, with the exception of Madison whose schools will receive $112,000 to hire two part-time officers. The new police officers patrol school grounds and are referred to as “school resource officers.”
There is no matching requirement under this COPS programs, Schumer said, meaning towns must not pay any of the salaries. Towns can use the money to hire a new police officer on the beat and have a senior officer move to the “school resource” position, as long as the money is used to provide an additional officer in the schools.
"School needs to be a safe place for children to escape all the distractions of the outside world," Schumer said. "Localities must have the resources to act quickly at the first report of a violent situation, as well as foster cooperation and respect among students to deal with problems before they violently surface. This funding will help ensure that the county’s schools will be that kind of safe place for learning.”
Schumer said community police officers within schools provide a variety of function other than acting as a security presence and link to local law enforcement. In-school officers also teach crime prevention and substance-abuse classes, monitor troubled students and serve to build respect for law enforcement among students.