Local religious leaders lobby for changes to gun control laws

Push for ban on assault rifles

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - From Boca Raton to the Treasure Coast, our communities have seen violent crimes drop by 25 percent since 2007. That means fewer murders, aggravated assaults and armed burglaries. But a group of local religious leaders says that isn't good enough.

"It is easier for children to get a gun and kill someone than it is to get a quality education in school," says C. Shahid Freedman.

Freedman represents the Democratic Party in Boynton Beach - he claims one in eight children you encounter on the street is carrying a weapon.

"Some of the children think it's just like putting on a belt," says Freedman.

Freedman and a group of pastors and rabbis say they want to start from the to - lobbying Congress and President Obama to ban assault weapons and high capacity magazines. They also want safer schools.

"The time has come to put metal detectors in all the schools," says Thomas Masters, Mayor of Riviera Beach.

Given the decrease in violent crimes in our area, we asked Freedman if the need for gun control is still great. He argues the numbers don't reflect what he sees in the community.

"We haven't made any progress in curbing the violence, or getting the guns off the streets," says Freedman.

The group is drafting a plan of action they plan to reveal on January 1st.

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