Mayor Mike McGinn said Friday afternoon that the city deployed extra, visible patrols around Seattle schools after the mass shooting at a Connecticut elementary school. But he said lasting protection against such tragedies would have to come from state legislation to limit access to guns and increase funding for mental-health care.
“We make this call again and again,” he said. “We really do need the public to maintain that pressure. What we have right now is, there is not a majority in the Legislature to do this.”
McGinn said the Legislature should tighten restrictions on gun shows and pass laws giving cities more authority to control guns. The State Supreme Court ruled earlier this year that Seattle could not ban guns in parks and community centers.
The mayor was joined at a news conference by Police Chief John Diaz and Assistant Chief Paul McDonagh. They said they train police about how to respond to shootings like the one in Connecticut. The city can’t directly control security at individual schools, and Diaz said schools’ design make them difficult to secure.
Diaz said there may be a point when things like metal detectors are necessary at Seattle schools.
“You hate a world like that,” he said.
Asked by a reporter what he would tell his own kids about the shooting, McGinn said, “That’s a good question. I will probably figure that out tonight after I give them a big hug.”