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Murkowski Steps Up Fight to Defend Funding for School Archery and Hunter Safety Education | #schoolsaftey


09.08.23

Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) this week cosponsored two measures that support students and schools with archery and hunter safety education. The bills would make congressional intent abundantly clear for the Biden administration, which is misinterpreting a provision of federal law to prevent schools from using federal education funds for hunter safety education and archery programs.

“Hunting is a way of life in Alaska. It’s how many of us fill our freezers with healthy protein for the winter. Hunter safety is a critical life skill to pass on to future generations of Alaskans and should be taught at home and in schools,” Senator Murkowski said.“I am working with my colleagues to correct this misinterpretation and preserve schools’ ability to teach students how to safely handle firearms, compete in archery, and use cutting tools in culinary classes. This isn’t a political issue – Senators from both sides of the aisle have introduced legislation to ensure the Department of Education implements the law as intended.”

Murkowski is cosponsoring the Allowing for Recreational Resources for Outdoor Wellness (ARROW) Act, led by Senator John Barrasso (R-Wyoming), as well as the Defending Hunters Education Act, led by Senator Jon Tester (D-Montana).  Both bills will ensure federal funding is available to Alaska schools that wish to teach the next generation how to safely and responsibly enjoy our treasured ways of life.

Senator Murkowski and her colleagues also sent a bipartisan letter to Education Secretary Miguel Cardona on September 5, stating that his Department has incorrectly interpreted the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act and asking that he correct the issue administratively. She also joined several colleagues in sending another bipartisan letter to the Senate Appropriations Committee, asking that they include a legislative fix in the FY 2024 Labor-HHS-Education bill. 

Background:

The Department has issued guidance prohibiting schools from using federal education funding for classes and activities that use “dangerous weapons”, including hunting and archery programs, which conflicts with Congressional intent and goes well beyond the intended scope of the legislation. 






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