HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
THIRTIETH LEGISLATURE, 2020
STATE OF HAWAII
A BILL FOR AN ACT
RELATING TO PREVENTING SCHOOL VIOLENCE.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:
SECTION 1. The legislature finds that there is a threat of targeted violence against Hawaii schools. Between January 1, 2019, and November 19, 2019, forty-five school shootings occurred over forty-six weeks across the United States. The shootings occurred at elementary, middle, and high schools, as well as on college and university campuses. Although Hawaii schools have not yet fallen victim to completed acts of mass violence, the State's schools do regularly experience threats of shootings and bombings. During the fall of 2019, public K-12 schools in Hawaii received more than twenty-five threats about shootings or bombings. Most threats were made via social media; the others were made by handwritten notes, graffiti, or telephone. Although the threats were never carried out, they caused fear and apprehension among students, parents, teachers, and the community.
On November 7, 2019, the United States Secret Service published "A U.S. Secret Service Analysis of Targeted School Violence". This report studied forty-one incidents of targeted school violence that occurred at K-12 schools in the United States between 2008 and 2017. Key findings of the study suggest that school violence is preventable. School-based and community-based threat assessment teams can use this knowledge and become trained to determine whether threats are credible or not. These teams may identify persons of concern before they commit acts of violence. Furthermore, intervention strategies, including counseling, mentorship, and thorough follow-up, can mitigate the threat to help the person of concern and also prevent serious acts of violence.
The legislature further finds that currently, gaps exist in inter-agency coordination, communication, and standardized responses to threats of targeted school violence in Hawaii. There is no statewide database of school threats to help identify copycats; analyze trends; and disseminate information to schools, law enforcement, and other agencies that need to protect students.
The purpose of this Act is to help prevent targeted school violence in Hawaii by:
(1) Establishing a pilot program to establish a start-to-finish response to threats of targeted school violence; and
(2) Providing long-term resources to help prevent targeted school violence, regardless of how the State chooses to implement future school violence prevention strategies.
SECTION 2. (a) There is established within the Hawaii state fusion center of the office of homeland security, established by section 128A-3, Hawaii Revised Statutes, a pilot program to:
(A) Interdisciplinary school-level threat assessment teams at the elementary, intermediate, middle, and high school level as well as the college or university level; and
(B) A larger-scale interdisciplinary threat assessment team to which the school-level teams may refer cases;
(A) Training for the general public, including students, school personnel, and the community, regarding the prevention of targeted school violence as well as the general concepts of threat assessment and intervention; and
(B) More advanced training for members of threat assessment teams;
(3) Operate threat assessment teams:
(A) To establish procedures for reporting, immediate response, threat assessment, threat management and monitoring, after-action reports, and statewide recordkeeping;
(B) To establish protocols for sharing information across agencies; and
(C) Pursuant to established procedures and protocols;
(4) Collect data on school violence, threats, responses to threats, the operation of threat assessment teams, and the resolution of cases; and
(5) Disseminate information on copycat threats, trends, and analyses to the appropriate state and county agencies.
(b) The pilot program:
(1) Shall include one elementary school, one middle or intermediate school, and one high school from the department of education that are geographically and socially related;
(2) May include one independent school and one public charter school; and
(3) May include one institution of higher education; provided that the institution of higher education:
(A) Enrolls a sufficient number of students who graduated from the high school identified in paragraph (1); and
(B) Dual-enrolls within its classes many students who are still attending the high school identified in paragraph (1).
(c) No later than twenty days prior to the convening of the regular sessions of 2021, 2022, 2023, and 2024, the Hawaii state fusion center of the office of homeland security shall submit to the legislature a report of its findings and recommendations, including any proposed legislation, concerning the pilot program.
(d) Nothing in this section shall be construed to prevent the office of homeland security from using other available resources to assist educational institutions other than those identified in subsection (b).
SECTION 3. There is appropriated out of the general revenues of the State of Hawaii the sum of $ or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal year 2020-2021 for the following purposes:
(1) A statewide anonymous reporting mechanism specifically designed to collect reports of threats of targeted school violence;
(2) A database to collect reports of threats to schools and school violence that were:
(A) Received by the anonymous reporting mechanism identified in paragraph (1); or
(B) Collected by law enforcement, educational, and other agencies;
(3) Other technological tools to enable analysis of social media and other data;
(4) Four full-time equivalent (4.0 FTE) positions, which shall be exempt from chapter 76, Hawaii Revised Statutes, as follows:
(A) Three full-time equivalent (3.0 FTE) analysts to:
(i) Operate the statewide anonymous reporting mechanism;
(ii) Analyze threats delivered via social media;
(iii) Analyze additional data relevant to school violence; and
(iv) Disseminate information to appropriate agencies in individual cases and periodically inform agencies and the public about copycat threats and trends in school violence; and
(B) One full-time equivalent (1.0 FTE) program manager to:
(i) Organize outreach and training to the general public and to educational institutions;
(ii) Organize training for school-level and larger-scale threat assessment teams;
(iii) Facilitate larger-scale interdisciplinary threat assessment teams by calling and attending meetings, coordinating efforts among agencies within the team, and keeping records of cases;
(iv) Assist in establishing procedures and protocols for creating and operating threat assessment teams and reporting among various agencies; and
(v) Coordinate efforts with other student-safety programs.
The sum appropriated shall be expended by the department of defense for the purposes of this Act.
SECTION 4. This Act shall take effect on July 1, 2050; provided that section 3 of this Act shall take effect on July 1, 2020; provided further that section 2 of this Act shall be repealed on June 30, 2024.
School Violence; Prevention; Pilot Program; Appropriations
Establishes a pilot program to prevent targeted school violence. Appropriates funds to the office of homeland security for resources to prevent targeted school violence. Takes effect on 7/1/2050. Repeals on 6/30/2024. (HD1)
The summary description of legislation appearing on this page is for informational purposes only and is not legislation or evidence of legislative intent.