President Obama speaking today about the Penn State child sexual assault scandal and protecting children in general:
“And I think it’s a good time for the entire country to do some soul-searching—not just Penn State. …our No. 1 priority has to be protecting our kids. And every institution has to examine how they operate, and every individual has to take responsibility for making sure that our kids are protected.” … “you can’t just rely on bureaucracy and systems in these kinds of situations. People have to step forward, they have to be tapping into just their core decency.” … “all of us have to step up, we don’t leave it to somebody else to take responsibility.”
To bar the Eastwood Mileground site, the ball is now in the West Virginia Supreme Court.
It’s worth repeating:
The Court can do the right thing now, before it is too late for any victims. The Court can protect Monongalia County Schools and the School Building Authority from themselves. The Court can protect all the children before any are hurt, injured, poisoned, or killed. At Penn State it is too late. In West Virginia it is not too late, but only if the people in position to meaningfully act do so now.
United States Education Secretary Arne Duncan reinforces the underlying imperative: “Schools and school officials have a legal and moral responsibility to protect children and young people from violence and abuse.”
West Virginia state Rule mandates:
“For the safety of students, [any and every] new school site shall be located away from hazards and undesirable environments, such as: a. … arterial highways, heavily traveled streets, traffic and congestion b. Noise, toxic gas escapes from … odoriferous plants or industries … e. … bulk storage plants for flammable liquid, and property zoned as industrial f. Situations where a combination of factors such as those presented above could contribute to the possibility of human entrapment…”
The intended Eastwood Mileground site is an egregious mass violation of multiple site prohibiting provisions above. The site is a dangerous, potentially lethal, even predictably lethal mass of insoluble violations. The WV state and county school officials have no right to risk the lives of children at the Eastwood Mileground site.