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Rubio, Colleagues Reintroduce Bill Leveraging Secret Service Threat Assessment Program to Improve School Safety

Feb 13, 2019 | Press Releases

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senators Marco Rubio (R-FL), Chuck Grassley (R-IA), and Doug Jones (D-AL) today reintroduced the EAGLES Act, legislation that would reauthorize and expand the U.S. Secret Service’s National Threat Assessment Center (NTAC) to help communities proactively mitigate threats of violence at schools.
A one-pager of the legislation is available here.
“To prevent future tragedies, we must be proactive and utilize a multi-pronged approach to identify and stop any threats,” said Rubio. “This bill will help ensure we are more effectively leveraging the top-notch research conducted by the experts at the National Threat Assessment Center to stop school violence and help keep our communities. This bill will expand threat assessment programs so that more school districts can be trained to identify threats and properly intervene. I thank Senator Grassley for his continued leadership on this legislation. I urge my colleagues to join this worthy effort and quickly pass this bill.”
“As an avid outdoorsman and responsible gun owner, I believe that there are common sense steps we can take to prevent gun violence and keep students safe. One of these steps is the EAGLES Act, which expands the role of the National Threat Assessment Center to provide research, resources, and training to prevent targeted violence. I look forward to partnering with Senator Grassley and my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to ensure this legislation becomes law,” Jones said.
Tomorrow marks the one year anniversary of the tragic shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, and our hearts are heavy as we remember the 17 victims. I will never stop fighting for the safety of our children at school and in our communities, and I am happy to support the EAGLES Act to prevent a tragedy like this from ever happening again,” Scott said.
“On the anniversary of the tragic and deadly shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Parkland Massacre, we need to take commonsense steps to make sure our law enforcement community understands and mitigates threats on school grounds. This bipartisan legislation is a good step towards protecting our children and preventing violent acts on school campuses,” Manchin said.
“Schools must be safe places for our students to learn and thrive. We are all appalled by the tragedies and violence in our schools. This bipartisan legislation would help prevent acts of violence before they occur and provide much needed resources to those in our schools – teachers, students, counselors, and school administrators – as well as law enforcement, mental health professionals, and everyone in our communities working to keep our schools safe,” Gardner said.  
“The United States Secret Service is very pleased to see the re-introduction of the EAGLES Act. This act will further support our efforts to mitigate all forms of targeted violence through comprehensive threat assessment programs. The EAGLES Act will allow us, through our National Threat Assessment Center, to enhance our collaborative efforts with federal, state, and local partners in the areas of training, consultation, research, and information sharing. The EAGLES Act is a proactive step aimed at reducing targeted violence within our communities,” the U.S. Secret Service said.
The U.S. Secret Service’s NTAC was created in 1998 to develop evidence-based indicators for various types of targeted violence, including school violence. NTAC’s findings can then be used to develop best practices and training to prevent future acts of violence. Since 2002, Secret Service has conducted 444 training operations to 93,000 school administrators, teachers, counselors, mental health professionals, school resource officers and other public safety partners. The EAGLES Act, reauthorizes and expands NTAC, allowing it to scale its threat assessment operations, with a particular focus on school safety.
The bill establishes a national program on targeted school violence prevention and provides additional resources to expand research and training on a national scale. The bill also requires Secret Service to develop an expansion plan and to provide periodic progress reports to Congress.
The bill is supported by the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association, the Sergeants Benevolent Association, the National Fraternal Order of Police, the National Association of School Psychologists, the National Association of Secondary School Principals, Sandy Hook Promise and families of those who perished in the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, FL.
In January, Rubio and his colleagues introduced the bipartisan Threat Assessment, Prevention, and Safety (TAPS) Act of 2019 (S. 265), legislation that would create a task force of experts to provide recommendations for a national strategy to keep communities safe from targeted violence through threat assessment and management. A one-pager of the legislation is available here.
Rubio also reintroduced his bipartisan “Red Flag” bill in January earlier this year. The Extreme Risk Protection Order and Violence Prevention Act (S. 7) would dedicate Department of Justice funds to incentivize states to give law enforcement the authority to prevent individuals who pose a threat to themselves or others the ability to purchase or possess firearms, while still providing due process protections. Rubio first introduced this bill in March of 2018 following the tragedy at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, FL. A one-pager of the legislation is available here.