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Students petition for gun control, members of Congress react

Posted at 6:46 PM, Jun 07, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-07 21:46:06-04

(KGTV) — A Poway Unified School District student started a petition asking for more gun control and inspiring students to take a stand.

"How do I even directly impact something like this that we keep on hearing about,” said Winnie Xu.

Xu is a board member for the district and started the petition for students that now has close to 800 signatures. The petition asks for universal background checks, red flag laws, and a ban on automatic weapons.

"School is not a choice, it's compulsory. It's not a move theatre, a grocery store, a mall that you can avoid. Students have to be there, and I think in an effort to protect our student's general welfare, this is means you have to take,” Xu added.

Her petition inspired a walkout of more than 2,000 students at Del Norte High School.

Rep. Scott Peters was there and read the petition. Read his full statement below:

​To every student who signed this petition, please know that I’m with you. I’m for federal universal background checks, for banning automatic weapons, for red flag laws, for all of it. I support doing whatever it takes to curb these horrific mass shootings, whatever it takes to make you safer. Every time the House has held votes on gun safety bills during my time in Congress, I've voted to pass them. I've read the names of gun violence victims on the House floor and livestreamed the House gun safety sit-in to push my Republican colleagues to do the right thing. I wrote a law to reduce violence and prevent suicides in our schools and the President signed it; I think it will make a difference. Don't lose hope. And I promise not to give up this fight.

Rep. Juan Vargas also shared what Congress is doing.

"Right now we have a bill we are probably going to vote on it this week and, some people feel uncomfortable that it goes too far, I don't think it goes anywhere near for enough."

The bill has two key points. Voting on a federal red flag law as well as the Protecting Our Kids Act which would raise the age to purchase a semi-automatic rifle to 21, and expand the ban on ghost guns.

"While what we are voting on this week won't do everything, it will put in place some important measures that will be first steps that could prevent this kind of violence in the future,” Rep. Sarah Jacobs said.

10News also reached out to the Poway Unified High School District for a response on the petition but haven’t heard back.

Click here to view the petition.