State lawmakers push legislation to create anonymous school threat reporting system

Vote was postponed until next month

Tony Romeo
May 22, 2018 - 12:09 pm

Tony Romeo-KYW Newsradio

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HARRISBURG, Pa. (KYW Newsradio) — The state Senate is considering legislation that would create a program to allow anonymous reporting of school safety threats. 

A scheduled vote Tuesday was postponed until next month because some senators want more time to review the bill.

The fast-tracked, bi-partisan bill would create a program managed by the office of Attorney General Josh Shapiro. Dubbed "Safe2Say," the program is modeled after one started in Colorado following the mass shooting at Columbine High School. 

"Whether it’s a phone call or an action on your app, you will be able to report to the attorney general’s office critically important information," Shapiro said.

State Sen. Vincent Hughes of Philadelphia, ranking Democrat on the Appropriations Committee, says the program has been a success in Colorado. “Since 2004, there have been 30,000 reports made to the program," Hughes said. 

And he says during the 2016-17 school year, the number of reports jumped dramatically. “A 58 percent increase over the previous year," Hughes said. "Says a message about the necessity of the program."

Hughes says an anonymous threat-reporting system can be a vital tool in the effort to keep schools safe.