Salt Lake City, UT. – Students from Parkland, Florida, who led the March for Our Lives in Washington this spring are now heading to Utah. Parkland shooting survivors will speak at a town hall style meeting near Salt Lake City on Saturday.
Students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School have been organizing for gun regulation since 17 people were killed at their school in February. They are calling for universal background checks, funding for CDC research into gun violence, and a ban on semi-automatic rifles.
Elizabeth Love is a Salt Lake City-based organizer volunteering with March for Our Lives. She said safety regulations are compatible with Second Amendment rights.
“This isn’t an issue of whether there’s going to be all guns or no guns,” Love said. “We just want it to be regulated in the way that every other right is regulated.”
Since June, the Road to Change Tour has been visiting U.S. cities affected by gun violence as well as places where the National Rifle Association has backed local politicians. Utah Republican Mia Love in 2016 was among top recipients of NRA contributions in Congress, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. March for Our Lives organizers want voters to take that into account.
Parkland students will join local organizers to lead the discussion at this week’s town hall. Elizabeth Love said attendees of the Road to Change event will also have the opportunity to register to vote.
“Our main focus is getting young people more involved,” she said; “not just in the issue of gun reform, but just in civic engagement in general.”
Saturday’s town hall event will be held at the Alder Amphitheater at Salt Lake Community College in Taylorsville.
Katherine Davis-Young, Public News Service