SOURCE: SafeDefend


June 03, 2015 10:00 ET

Survivor of Heath High School Shooting Endorses SafeDefend for Classroom Security Systems & Teacher Training

KANSAS CITY, MO--(Marketwired - Jun 3, 2015) - Missy Jenkins Smith, a survivor of the Heath High School Shooting and award winning author, has endorsed SafeDefend for its use of non-lethal, advanced technology and a teacher training program which empowers teachers and ensures continued safety of students in the classroom.

Ms. Jenkins Smith became a victim of school shooting violence on December 1, 1997, when a student at her high school randomly fired a .22 caliber semi-automatic pistol in the school lobby. Fifteen-year-old Smith was among the five critically injured students and was left paralyzed and wheelchair-bound.

After the shooting, Smith felt compelled to become an advocate and speak publicly about her experience and the importance of a proactive approach to school safety. Smith said, "It's very important for people to realize that this is something that can happen anywhere." Smith believes that more work needs to be done in the domain of school safety, adding, "Students and teachers need to understand the importance of being prepared in the event of an emergency -- and that these events can be prevented. SafeDefend prepares staff and provides information and options my teachers never had."

Watch an interview with Ms. Jenkins Smith and Valerie Jennings, spokesperson for SafeDefend:

SafeDefend is a comprehensive approach, including a teacher training program and security system for classrooms. With the swipe of a fingertip, SafeDefend's command center notifies law enforcement, main school office, school resource officer, teachers, staff and district administrators. The advanced technology drastically reduces law enforcement response time, saving lives. The Personal Protection System was designed with FBI and law enforcement from local and national threat assessment experts, police chiefs and sheriffs.

Since the shooting, Smith has accepted her disability and reclaimed her life by speaking publicly about the incident to tens of thousands of youth and adults, garnering national media attention. Additionally, Smith has written an award winning memoir, titled, "I Choose to Be Happy: A School Shooting Survivor's Triumph Over Tragedy."

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