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Plan for Boston School Police to Carry Pepper Spray Halted

November 06, 2014  | 

Interim Boston School Superintendent John McDonough announced Wednesday night that he was halting efforts to equip school police with pepper spray, saying it might “drive a wedge between our students and the school police.”

McDonough told the School Committee in his opening remarks that it became clear during forums held in recent weeks to develop a pepper-spray policy that students, parents, and other community members did not support the idea of equipping the system’s 75 school police officers with the chemical spray, the Boston Globe reports.

He also noted the number of student arrests has dropped dramatically in recent years, and that the district has taken other steps to bolster safety, such as installing key-card access to schools, upgrading cameras, and adopting new measures to prevent conflicts before they erupt.

Boston school police officers, who carry no weapons, have been pushing for pepper spray for years. They finally struck an agreement with the School Committee as part of their union contract more than seven years ago to carry it.

Comments (7)

Displaying 1 - 7 of 7

Ordinary Joe @ 11/7/2014 6:09 AM

The community reaps what it sows. So we will stick with using physical contact to resolve the issues. I am sure that is by far the better means to halt a physical attack.

TBOW426 @ 11/7/2014 8:16 AM

No weapons... then they are not the police. More stupid ass rules who from a PC dumbass who has never been in a fight. Worked a football game a few years ago and was asked to remove a student who had been banned from extra curricular activities on school property. All 6-6 200lbs. of him said f*** off and walked away from me. Took a Taser and three of us to do it, but he left in cuffs. If I worked at this school I would have on blinders and just put my time in. I also would have back-up on my ankle or somewhere on my person out of sight.

kevCopAz @ 11/7/2014 1:21 PM

TBOW is right, perhaps that why school arrests are down… why in the world would any security person do anything at all (blinders on) with no weapons at all to defend themselves then be hammered for "abusing the poor HS "child". You "School Police" are really not anything but fodder for violence and a condom for the school insurance, you are by NO MEANS Police. Wait till a Boston school has a shooting issue or a major deal, I hope they remember the schools super who is such a tricking fool! This is what you get when "police Depts" in Universities and schools are run by non sworn, liberal foolish "educators" who think all people think and act as they do. Well when the victims come, and they will, I hope that its not innocent students but foolish administrators like this superintendent and his principles, teaches and other fools. Then watch how fast they scream for real police on campus.

Jack Betz @ 11/7/2014 2:04 PM

If they are unarmed, what in blue blazes are they there for in the first place. A teacher can tell a kid to sit down and behave and send him to the office for that matter.

TheRookie @ 11/7/2014 6:56 PM

To be completely unarmed with no arrest powers don't garner the title of, Police Officer. Being armed & trained in a non-Law Enforcement Position is called a, Security Officer. Not being disrespectful but when uniformed & unarmed their title is, Security Guard. They have no authority which is absolutely pathetic in a Major City like Boston. Couldn't pay me enough to do it. Would be a good supplemental job for retired L.E.O. or other retirees.

Ima Leprechaun @ 11/10/2014 3:02 AM

A stun gun would make a lot more sense rather than pepper spray. A stun weapon only affects the target and not bystanders. With no real police powers the security person can legally detain suspects until the arrival of the "real" police but nothing more.

Ret. Motor Boots @ 11/10/2014 10:51 PM

There will come a day in that department, when the police have to call the police. Being one of the many guys who runs towards gunfire and not from it, I feel for those officers who may have to run into something hot and not have the proper tools to do what they need to do. Lord, help them if anything bad ever happens to one of those officers.

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