NYS Assembly passes Alyssa’s Law in effort to keep schools safe

The state assembly wrapped up business Saturday, putting an end to the state legislative session. Lawmakers worked Friday night and early Saturday to take up remaining bills.

Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie announcing the chamber passed the Green CHIPS bill, which would incentivize semiconductor manufacturers to build new factories in New York State and Alyssa’s law.

Alyssa’s Law is named in honor of Alyssa Alhadeff, who was shot and killed in the Parkland shooting in 2018.

“Schools should be a safe place for our kids to learn and grow,” Speaker Heastie said. “While we passed a comprehensive package of legislation to strengthen our state’s gun laws, installing these technologies would add a layer of security to our schools in the event of a shooting or an emergency, and give schools a direct line of communication to law enforcement.”

The law would require school district district-wide safety teams to consider, as part of their review of the comprehensive district-wide safety plan, the installation of a panic alarm system to silently alert law enforcement in the event of a life threatening or emergency situation.

“Alyssa’s Law will sharpen school safety plans around the state by ensuring districts consider panic alarms and direct communication technologies between buildings and police,” Assemblymember Kenneth P. Zebrowski said. “These technologies and procedures may reduce response times and save lives during a school shooting incident. This bill won’t bring Alyssa back, but it will honor her memory. I would like to thank especially Alyssa’s mother Lori, her cousin Jaydn and the rest of her family for their tireless work to make our schools safer.”

The legislation to curb gun violence Heastie mentioned comes as people across the nation call for action in the wake of three high profile mass shootings. That includes one at an elementary school in Texas that killed 21 people and one right in Upstate New York at a Buffalo Tops that killed 10.

As our Zack Fink reports, our state is the first in the nation to respond to those tragedies, but lawmakers urge that we aren’t the last.

Alyssa’s Law now heads to the governor’s desk.

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