Parents of students affected by the 2018 mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida were in Washington on Wednesday pushing the Biden administration to continue efforts to quell gun violence.
Tony Montalto, the father of Gina Montalto, who was killed in the attack, along with Tom Hoyer, the father of Luke Hoyer, who was also killed, spoke with Scripps News' Haley Bull on Wednesday to talk about their efforts on school safety and firearms reforms with the Biden administration.
They met with Neera Tanden, who leads the Biden administration's Domestic Policy Council to push for more implementation of the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, sponsored by Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio.
The legislation pushes for more mental health resources in schools, covered by Medicaid and telehealth services.
The legislation was passed in 2022 and aims to secure campuses, improve mental health screening support programs and support better control over firearm safety and ownership.
The two parents were also in Washington, D.C. to promote two new bills, including the Mental Health Excellence in Schools Act, a grant program for graduate students who want to provide school-based mental health services.
The other piece of legislation is the EAGLES Act, which aims to help train schools and communities to assess threats, and expands the National Threat Assessment Center (NTAC) within the U.S. Secret Service.
The parents are also pushing for funding for armed guards on Florida school campuses, hoping that will continue to deter more mass shootings.
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