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Teachers union presses Congress on gun-control

The American Federation of Teachers (AFT) has sent a letter to Congress calling on the U.S. legislature to pass a number of bills that the group says would curb gun violence.

The story: In the letter to Sens. Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Patty Murray (D-WA), AFT President Randi Weingarten calls for the implementation of a ban on assault rifles, stricter background checks, and so-called red flag gun laws to avert future shootings.

“Tragically, too many of our nation’s schools and communities are being terrorized by the effects of gun violence,” Weingarten wrote, according to The Hill. “We must work to pursue and implement commonsense solutions to reduce these acts of violence.”

“We implore you to consider the following proposals,” she added. “They have been informed by members’ firsthand experiences in schools and communities touched by gun massacres.”

In addition to these proposals, the group is also calling for mental support in schools and laws to combat white supremacy.

“This is what we think will work and let’s have some courage to do it,” Weingarten said in an interview with The Hill.

“Instead of having nothing, it is important to actually have some bipartisanship here,” she added.

The push by the ATF comes on the heels of the two mass shootings in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio, last month during which a total of 31 people were fatally shot and dozens of others were wounded.

The shootings revived talks of implementing new gun-control legislation, with Democratic lawmakers calling for universal background checks and an assault rifle ban.

On the other hand, some Republican lawmakers have voiced support for the red-flag laws, which would keep firearms out of the hands of individuals deemed by a court to be a danger to themselves and public safety.