On July 29, members of Congress introduced the Counseling Not Criminalization in Schools Act, which prohibits the use of federal funds to hire, train, or retain law enforcement officers at the nation’s preK-12 schools. The bill also creates a $2.5 billion grant program to school districts that want to replace school police with school staff such as counselors, nurses, psychologists, and personnel trained in de-escalation and violence interruption practices, anti-bias practices or expertise in positive school climate and behavior.
“For years, the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. and its allies of students, parents, and advocates across the country have sought to remove police from schools and end police violence against and arrests of Black and Brown students, some as young as six, in states such as South Carolina, Maryland, and Florida for minor infractions. The Counseling Not Criminalization in Schools Act will ensure that federal funds are not used to support school police but for school staff and programs that are proven to effectively create safe and positive school climates.”
Founded in 1940, the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF) is the nation’s first civil and human rights law organization. LDF has been completely separate from the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) since 1957—although LDF was originally founded by the NAACP and shares its commitment to equal rights. LDF’s Thurgood Marshall Institute is a multi-disciplinary and collaborative hub within LDF that launches targeted campaigns and undertakes innovative research to shape the civil rights narrative. In media attributions, please refer to us as the NAACP Legal Defense Fund or LDF.