CR Washington students take pledge against gun violence - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

CR Washington students take pledge against gun violence

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Students at Washington High School in Cedar Rapids are taking a pledge against gun violence.

Multiple Washington students have been killed in the last several years in shootings whether they be intentional or not.

The pledge reads, "I will never bring a gun to school. I will never use a gun to settle a personal problem or dispute. I will use my influence with my friends to keep them from using guns to settle disputes."

"Washington High School has really felt the pain of several students who have lost their life to guns," says Dr. Carlos Grant Interim Principal at Washington High School.

Students have lost friends to shootings like 15-year-old Senquez Jackson in March. 

"One of my close friends he played basketball and he went here and he got shot because one of his friends they were playing with a gun and they weren't supposed to," says Cordal Lawis, a Washington student.

Shooting accidents have happened in students families as well.

"Just recently my 3-year-old cousin shot himself in the head with one of my uncles guns," says Edna Abraham, a Washington Student.

Students will be welcome to sign the pledge against gun violence and share personal stories with their peers if they wish.

"Less shootings, less people losing their lives to gun violence, people willing to talk about yes I know a person who has a gun and they had it here at school," says Dr. Grant.

He says there are 1400 students at Washington High School and ideally they'll get 1400 signatures.

Dr. Grant wants students to feel comfortable speaking up if they see something and he wants them to know they will be kept anonymous.

Students say some of the gun violence comes from a gang problem streamed down from older gang members.

"They'll set the younger ones up for failure, because they already know what the outcome for them is," Lawis says.

Some students told us they worry some of their peers will only learn the hard way. 

"They're already heading down the wrong path so they'll probably just keep heading down that path until one of their own gets killed by a gun or they get killed by a gun," Abraham says.

Dr. Grant says he hopes the campaign against gun violence never ends at Washington High School, he says there will be efforts to keep it going both on social media and in the classroom.

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