REDWOOD CITY (KCBS) — A first-of-its-kind conference in Redwood City on Monday sought to address school shootings and looks for solutions in how to prevent them.

Dozens of teachers, police officers and mental health professionals discussed ways to prevent mass killings and the steps they can take even without new gun control legislation.

It was standing room only at the Oracle Conference Center where those who attended “Beyond Newtown: How to Ensure Safe Schools and Communities”, discussed how to identify possible school shooters before the worst happens.

San Mateo County Supervisor Adrienne Tissier said law enforcement, educators and mental health workers need to be able to share information more easily.

“You’ve got HIPAA [Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996] and FERPA [Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act]; you have all these laws that say you can’t share information, but we need to be able to share information,” she said.

Tissier said law enforcement also needs to come up with a standardized response to school incidents, and they need to find gaps in mental health services.

Rep. Jackie Speier (D-Peninsula) said at the conference she is not giving up hope that a gun control bill will eventually pass through Congress.

“I am convinced that we will do the right thing over the long term as I tell people over and over again. This is a marathon, not a sprint,” Speier said.

On Sunday, State Senator Joe Manchin said he would re-introduce a measure requiring background checks for gun buyers at gun shows and online.

(Copyright 2013 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)


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