High school students lobby lawmakers to change Ohio gun laws


More than a hundred high school students joined together at the Ohio Statehouse Wednesday in a massive lobbying effort to help change the state's gun laws.

LAST or "Lobbying For A Safer Tomorrow," says it's time Ohio passes legislation that would ban bump stocks. The accessory can turn a semi-automatic weapon into fully automatic. They also want to ban those convicted of domestic violence from owning a firearm.

The students came from Columbus, Cincinnati, Cleveland and Akron. They wore bright orange shirts to stand out in the crowd. These future voters wanted lawmakers to understand that their voices need to be heard.

"Every single one of these people is going to be future voters in a few short years if they are not already. They are all the constituents of the legislators we're talking to today and I think it's so important for them to see that each one of these people is a voter that they might be getting if they don't listen to our voice," Emily Marmer, a Senior at Walnut Hills in Cincinnati, said.

The students said the shooting in Florida, that left 17 dead, sparked their desire to change the state's gun laws.

"For far too long young people in desperate need of healthcare have been easily been able to acquire firearms," Micah Kraus, a Senior at Walnut Hills, said.

Matthew Youkilis, a Junior at Walnut Hills in Cincinnati, is a relative of one of the Florida shooting victims.

"My cousin was one of the victims of the shooting in Parkland and her family and immediate family would want us to stand up and make sure that this doesn't happen to another family," said Youkilis.

At an earlier rally, students from "Voices Of the Unheard" met with lawmakers, asking them to spend less money on hiring more school resource officers and instead pay for more mental health counselors in schools.