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Poll: Teens Strongly Support School Safety Measures Focused On Mental Illness


Despite efforts by student activists wholly focused on stripping citizens of their Second Amendment rights in the name of "school safety," a new Pew Research survey shows that a majority of teens believe focusing on mental illness would be the most effective way to prevent a potential school shooting. 

According to the survey, an overwhelming majority of teens (86%) think preventing people with mental illnesses from purchasing guns would be an effective way to prevent gun violence in schools, including 57 percent who say it would be “very effective” and 29 percent who think the measure would be “somewhat effective.”

The second measure that gets the most support from teens is improving mental health screening and treatment:

Eighty-six percent (86%) of teens support improving mental health screening and treatment, with 55 percent who say it would be “very effective” and 31 percent who say it would be “somewhat effective.”

Other measures that have a significant amount of support are having metal detectors in schools (79%) and banning assault-style weapons (66%).

The measure that seems to have the least amount of support is allowing teachers and school officials to carry guns in schools, with only 39 percent in favor.


The Pew Research survey also found that a majority of teens (57%) are worried that a shooting could happen and their schools, with 25 percent who say they are “very worried” and 32 percent who say they are “somewhat worried.”

Black and Hispanic teens tend to be more worried than white teens.  Females also tend to be more worried about a possible school shooting than their male counterparts.


Pew Research began conducting the survey just a few weeks after the Parkland, Florida school shooting on Feb. 14 that left 17 people dead and several seriously injured.

The survey of 743 U.S. teens ages 13 to 17 was conducted from March 7-April 12 and has a sampling error of 5 percentage points.

(Cover Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

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