Ohio State to allow some officers to carry concealed guns
- Some off-duty police officers will be allowed to carry concealed guns on Ohio State University’s campus under a move by college trustees to exempt officers from a state code that restricts firearms on university property, Cleveland.com reports.
- Full-time officers who are employees of the university’s police division or are members of municipal or state police forces in the region can carry weapons into buildings, events and venues if they follow appropriate protocols.
- The move is in response to the rash of school shootings nationally and a shooting in 2016 in which 11 students were injured in an attack on Ohio State's campus.
The National Association of Student Personnel Administrators reports that legislation has been introduced in at least 10 states this year related to guns on campus, often revolving around the issue of concealed weapons.
For instance, legislation introduced in Oklahoma takes power away from college presidents to prevent concealed handguns in campus facilities and, similarly, a West Virginia bill has been introduced that prohibits campus governing boards from developing regulations restricting firearms except in large arenas and at daycare centers.
Other states are simply removing any restrictions on the ability to carry a gun on campus, while others are developing laws that allow faculty and staff members to volunteer to be unpaid "campus protection officers."
So far this year since the shootings at Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida and the publicity about gun violence, only one state, New Jersey, has introduced legislation to criminalize carrying a weapon on campus.
After a photo of a recent Kent State University graduate holding a gun on campus and promoting her pro-gun stance went viral, the school clarified its policy about guns, noting that while students are restricted from concealing weapons, because this person had graduated, she was considered a "guest" and not covered by the policy.
U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos recently told senators that a commission formed to study school safety will not consider gun control measures.