Senator Pat Browne and Attorney General Josh Shapiro today announced a partnership with Sandy Hook Promise to roll out and operate the Safe2Say Something Anonymous Reporting System for every school across the Commonwealth.
Senator Browne was the prime sponsor of Senate Bill 1142 (Act 44 of 2018) along with Senators Vincent Hughes and Scott Martin, which created Pennsylvania’s Safe2Say program. The Safe2Say Program will provide for the anonymous reporting of unsafe, potentially harmful, dangerous, violent or criminal activities in schools or the threat of the activities.
“This initiative and partnership with Sandy Hook Promise, advanced by the passage of our important comprehensive school safety legislative in June, will provide students with a confidential, anonymous way to report any suspicious behavior or activity they have witnessed or that has been brought to their attention,” said Senator Browne. “Being administered by our Attorney General’s office, it will ensure that the information provided remains confidential and anonymous and is sent to the appropriate law enforcement agency and school officials for further investigation.”
“This anonymity is the key,” Senator Browne continued. “Students may not feel comfortable bringing the actions, comments or behavior of their fellow classmates to the attention of authority if they must identify themselves in the process. However, students are more likely to feel comfortable and safe if they are able to report these concerns anonymously.”
The new partnership was announced by Senator Browne, Attorney General Shapiro and Nicole Hockley, Managing Director of Sandy Hook Promise, at a press conference at the Sara Lindemuth/Anna Carter Primary School near Harrisburg.
“Pennsylvania students deserve a safe place to learn, free from the threat of violence from classmates or other individuals,” said Attorney General Shapiro. “I’m proud my office was entrusted by the legislature to run this new program focused on school safety. Working together with Sandy Hook Promise, we can make Pennsylvania safer for families, teachers and, most importantly, our students.”
“We are proud to work with the Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General to provide students with our comprehensive violence prevention training and anonymous reporting system,” said Hockley, whose son, Dylan, was shot and killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School. “We know that early prevention programs like ours are proven to stop violence before it starts. With this launch, we will train students across the state how to recognize at-risk behaviors and take action to help someone else by submitting a tip anonymously. Safe2Say Something will save lives and help Pennsylvania students to stay safe and healthy,”
Under the Safe2Say Something Anonymous Reporting System, call center analysts with the Office of Attorney General will receive and review tips, and refer them to designated school contacts and law enforcement as necessary. Reports can be submitted anonymously through an online website form, hotline phone number or on a mobile app. The program is scheduled to begin in January 2019.
The partnership with Sandy Hook Promise is the first of its kind through which the organization will provide expertise from its Anonymous Reporting System at a statewide level. While Sandy Hook Promise has trained 3.5 million students, teachers and others in 50 states in best practices to detect and report signs of potential violence, Pennsylvania is the first location in which Sandy Hook Promise will work across an entire state.
Contacts: Vicki Wilken 717-787-1349