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Moms and students hosting gun violence town hall in Kalamazoo

Two local groups are hosting a gun violence town hall in Kalamazoo (WWMT Online/MGN Graphics).

KALAMAZOO, Mich. (NEWSCHANNEL 3) ā€” Two West Michigan groups are holding a public town hall on gun violence prevention on Wednesday.

They've invited the candidates running for the 6th congressional district to share their ideas for preventing gun violence.

The town hall is being hosted by the groups Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, as well as Students for Gun Legislation. Members of both organizations tell Newschannel 3 they want to see common sense laws that will protect our communities.

Students for Gun Legislation was started in Kalamazoo after the Parkland High School shooting in Florida. They said they're hoping to hear the ideas the candidates have for keeping students safe.

"Iā€™m hoping to hear from the candidates, legislative means that they're going to actually get into office and enact legislation that will make the communities not only safer, but the people safer, including the students,ā€ said Reuben Glasser, who helped create the group Students for Gun Legislation.

Both students and members of the Moms for Action group will be moderating the town hall.

Organizer said they would like to see stronger background checks, less loopholes when it comes to getting guns; things like red flag laws to prevent guns from getting into the hands of those with mental illness or previous violent behavior.

At the town hall, they want to hear specific ideas from the candidates.

"We've seen shootings everywhere and we need to get a handle on what's going on and figure out the problem without, and I say this very strongly, without denying anybody's rights,ā€ said Leona Gould-McElhone, a volunteer with Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America.

The 6th district town hall meeting on gun legislation is happening Wednesday from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. in the Van Deusen room of the main branch of the Kalamazoo Public Library in downtown Kalamazoo.

Confirmed participants include candidates David Benac, Rich Eichholz, george Franklin, and Matt longjohn. Incumbent Congressman Fred Upton was invited but has not yet confirmed if he will attend.

The discussion is open to everyone and they will be taking questions from the audience.

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