Sunday afternoon, students from all over Austin organized a Town Hall for Our Lives event. Hundreds showed up to continue the discussion on gun violence in schools.
“I want to come home and complain to my mom about my math homework, not about being in a corner shaking for 90 minutes because of a lockdown. It’s terrifying,” one student says.
25 students took the stage at Travis High, directing questions to state lawmakers like Representative Lloyd Doggett.
They began the meeting by stating why they chose to be here today.
Ari Miller-Fortman is a freshman at McCallum Fine Arts Academy. She says after March for our Lives, students have to keep pushing and making a difference.
The students expressed what they’d like to see in schools. One suggestion included AISD having cultural competence training to help understand how to best help all students. They also expressed how the mass shooting in parkland made the issue of gun violence very real for them.
“When we go to school tomorrow I know everyone feels kind of unsafe in schools but we’ll go hoping this march and event will do something,” Miller-Fortman says.
Organizers say, in America an average of 7 children die each day from gun related injuries. They stress gun violence doesn’t discriminate.
“Next town hall we need more LGBTQ representatives, Latino, black we want more representatives than white and straight people because all lives matter,” Miller-Fortman adds.
No matter how long it takes, these students say they’re dedicated to making their schools safer.
Selina Eshraghi a freshman at UT, says being an activist makes her realize how slowly change can move.
“So seeing people care about this topic, and who care about seeing where this is going, it gives me a lot of hope and energy moving forward.”
“I think it’s exciting. These students are inspirational. If we are to ever get effective action on gun safety it will be because of the leadership these students have provided. I’m here to listen to them a little about the realities of Congress,” Congressman Lloyd Doggett says.
Many parents and adults in the room kept expressing how inspired they feel after seeing students voice how they feel on gun control this weekend. On April 20th students of Austin say they’re having a walkout for gun safety at the Texas Capitol from 1-3 P.M.