Dec 26, 2012 11:48 PM by Rebecca Taylor

Retirees propose they provide school security

TUCSON - A retired police officer with nearly three decades of experience, wants to volunteer his time providing armed security to local schools.

In a letter to Governor Jan Brewer, he writes qualified retired law enforcement throughout the state are willing to do the same.

For 28 years, Lieutenant Bill Breen worked for the Department of Public Safety.

He wants to come out of retirement to serve Arizona's kids.

"This is a copy of the letter that I sent to Governor Brewer," he says reading it aloud. "Like me there are many qualified retired police officers throughout the state who would gladly volunteer their time to provide armed security."

In the wake of budget cuts Breen knows that hiring security and police officers on campus is almost impossible.

He's willing to work for free boosting security in schools.

He proposes creating a list of qualified retirees willing to volunteer at schools in their area.

Background checks and schedules would be set by DPS and the school district

"The student's safety is enhanced, at no cost to the school district or the state, and it's a positive image for the school districts and the state and DPS," says Breen.

So far, the governor has not responded to Breen's letter.

What do Tucsonans think of his idea?

Ryan Siegrist says, "I think that's a good idea, just for the fact of all the mass shootings that have happened."

Jacob Porter says, "It's a good way to help the kids and help them too, cause they're retired and probably have nothing to do."

"Yes, well I guess if he was totally checked out," says Tucsonan David Goldstein. "On the other hand, I'm not sure we should have guns in schools."

Breen says safety is his priority. He proposes that retirees go through a free NRA school security program under the direction of the individual school district.

"This offering of retirees who would volunteer is a win win for almost everyone," says Breen. He calls committed retirees like him an 'untapped resource'.


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