ST. PAUL – With 44 Democrat lawmakers declaring that they do not support a fix to law that has left dozens of schools without school resources officers, state Rep. Jeff Dotseth, R-Silver Township is urging those Democrats who remain undecided to join Republicans in asking Gov. Tim Walz to call a special session and work together on a solution.
Dotseth said new state law changes what SROs are allowed to do to de-escalate aggressive or violent situations, taking away tools they can use to keep students and teachers safe. In response, over 40 law enforcement agencies have pulled SROs from schools across Minnesota.
“I have remained in contact with law enforcement and school officials from throughout our area and beyond to understand the full range of impacts of this change in law,” Dotseth said. “There are real concerns over the danger it presents to our students, teachers and staff. We cannot allow legislators on the more radical DFL fringe to continue acting as a roadblock to fixing this problem. All 64 House Republicans are on board with a common-sense solution the overwhelming majority of Minnesotans would support, and we welcome Democrats to join us in developing a bipartisan solution.”
House and Senate Republicans have urged Walz to call a special session to clarify the SRO language that is now in law. In response, 44 Democrat lawmakers stated they do not support a special session, preferring to leave the law alone.
Dotseth said political games should not be played with student and teacher safety, and urged Democrats to do the right thing and join Republicans in addressing law enforcement’s concerns with the new law and brining SROs back to the schools that have lost them.
“It is unfathomable to allow an issue as important as this one to become political,” Dotseth said. “The DFL enacted extreme policy that makes our schools less safe, putting children, teachers and staff at risk. That’s the bottom line, and we need to fix this problem the DFL trifecta caused. Most Minnesotans agree this needs to be fixed and I call on my DFL colleagues to show some courage by standing up to the radicals and joining Republicans to make it happen.”