The Seneca Nation has vowed to fund additional School Resource Officers in two western New York school districts Wednesday. The officers are expected to help combat illegal drug activity, violence and bullying.
The School Resource Officers or SRO’s will begin working in the Lake Shore and Silver Creek School District’s, mentoring and teaching K-12 students about topics such as anti-bullying and drug resistance.
The Seneca Nation pledged $730,000 to fund the two SRO’s appointments for 3 years. Tribal Counselor with the Seneca Nation Nikki Seneca says violence, and drug and alcohol abuse has escalated over the years among students, she says she feels the SRO’s will help reduce the illegal activity and positively impact children’s lives.
“Not only bullying issues, drug and alcohol issues, School Resource Officers are a great resource for students to help them when dealing with anything. We just feel that the safety of our children is of the utmost importance and you really can’t put a dollar amount on that,” said Seneca.
Chautauqua County Sheriff Joseph Gerace says SRO’s have proven to be successful in reducing violence and illegal drug activity in schools and homes in the past.
“The relationship gets built between the SRO and the student is a relationship of trust and that helps us prevent criminal activity, and then when there is problems to help solve them as well,” said Gerace.
SRO’s will also be expected to come up with safety and evacuation plans in case of an emergency. Gerace says they will provide security and safety for students, faculty and staff.