Gov. Phil Murphy visited East Brook Middle School today to announce a $6.5 million investment in American Rescue Plan funds toward a statewide school security initiative to collect and digitize school building blueprints and make them available to first responders. Accurate and uniform maps are critical to enable law enforcement personnel to swiftly respond to emergencies in unfamiliar environments.
Currently, New Jersey first responders have access to Collaborative Response Graphics (CRG) for approximately 1,500 of the state’s 3,000 public and private schools. The initiative unveiled by Murphy will help the New Jersey Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness (NJOHSP) and the New Jersey State Police (NJSP) map the remaining 1,500 schools in an effort to further safeguard New Jersey students and educators.
“Nothing is more important than the safety of our children and the educators who help our children achieve their full potential,” Murphy said. “In order to protect our children and educators, we must equip our first responders with the most up-to-date 21st-century technology so that they can respond to emergencies without unnecessary delay.”
“This new school security investment will ensure that law enforcement has immediately accessible digital blueprints of every school building in the state, God forbid there is an active shooter situation or other attack. This technology will help law enforcement act quickly and decisively,” said Congressman Josh Gottheimer.
“School building floor plans play an important role in how quickly and effectively law enforcement can respond to emergencies, and protect the lives of our children and educators,” said Acting Attorney General Matthew J. Platkin. “By investing in digital blueprint mapping software for every K-12 school in New Jersey, both law enforcement and school administrators will have the information they need to act swiftly and with precision.”
“Preparation is fundamental to our mission and our work at NJOHSP,” said NJOHSP Director Laurie Doran. “I applaud Gov. Murphy, my fellow cabinet members, as well as school administrators for recognizing the importance of our statewide mapping initiative and for allocating the resources to expand upon our ongoing security response efforts. Our agency stands ready to support this initiative knowing that building an effective resiliency plan requires all stakeholders to collaborate, to share information and to detect and respond to threats together in real time.”
“The New Jersey State Police has more than 100 schools in State Police patrolled areas where we have a consistent uniformed presence to ensure the safety of students and staff,” said Colonel Patrick J. Callahan, Superintendent of the New Jersey State Police. “Ensuring that our children and school personnel are safe will always be an important part of our ongoing mission, and this new initiative will undoubtedly assist law enforcement during emergent times by affording first responders the resources to work quickly and more efficiently.”
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