"How to Safely Bring Your Concealed Weapon to the Workplace" by James Forrester
04 Mar 2019
Concealed Carry Weapons (CCW) permits are on the rise. Over their lifetime, Americans spend ⅓ of their time at work. Yet, the majority of employers do not allow CCW at workplaces. Employers have major concerns about liability, damages, and the escalation of conflicts. Always check before you bring your firearm to the workplaces.
According to the Department of Labor, 16,000 acts of workplace violence take place each year. Workplaces often have a ban on weapons in the workplace to prevent violence from happening or escalating. Retail workers are the most frequent victims of violence. Yet, many businesses block workers from carrying guns or even acts of self-defense.
How to Bring Your CCW into the Workplace
Employers don’t always condone bringing CCW into the workplace. The largest reason by far is the liability. Check with your employer, employee handbook, and HR before doing so. Having an unauthorized firearm in the workplace can create problems for everyone.
Carrying a gun shouldn’t make you feel “cool” or like a hero. It is just a tool - it requires training, a level head, and most importantly, common sense. Carrying doesn’t require you to step up during any problem that occurs at the workplace. CCW classes explain that once you have a firearm on you, situations can only escalate.
The only time to let anyone know that you are carrying is when your life or your coworkers and customers life is threatened.
Clear It with Your Employer
Before you bring a firearm to work, check with your employer. Many employers are not okay with employees carrying firearms. Carrying a firearm is a duty and a privilege. You have the right to carry until you step into the workplace.
Certain jobs allow or even encourage concealed carry weapons. While at other places, it is a grounds for termination if you are making other employees feel unsafe.
Lock Weapons Up During Work
If you are leaving your gun unattended, don’t! Leaving a gun unattended is negligent.
Lock your firearm up if you are required to leave it at your desk, locker, or vehicle. Consider buying a small gun safe for your desk that you can lock and keep the key on you. It should be unloaded with the chamber clear, with a key only you have. Do not allow common access to your firearm. You are liable for your firearm, and it is not worth the legal trouble.
Never Admit a Holdout
A CCW should not change you. Being more confrontational because you have a gun on you is not safe. No one but you should know whether or not you have a gun on you. A concealed carry weapon is designed to be concealed. Flashing a gun is not safe. It doesn’t make others feel safe.
You do not want to be the person at the office that people avoid because you are way too into guns. Your coworkers shouldn’t know you are carrying, because it also invites theft.
It can also push them away from you, because they could be nervous about being near someone with a weapon. Some people will not buy or work with gun owners. It is usually best if you do not show you are carrying unless your life is in danger.
Use Safety During Work
Safety with firearms is a mentality, and there are a set of rules that should never be broken.
Keep your gun locked and unloaded when not in your immediate control.
Never point it at anything you are not comfortable with the gun destroying.
Keep your gun clean and in working order.
Never leave a loaded gun unattended at the workplace.
A gun is always loaded, even when its unloaded, and especially when it is not in your hands.
Never use your gun, unless you are willing to deal with the ramifications.
Trusting your firearm is a two way street - you need to take care of your weapon if you want it to take care of you. Maintaining your firearm is as important as maintaining your car, your home, or your teeth.
Carrying During Work
Holsters that secure your firearm are essential. Inside the waistband, holsters are the most common. Buying a holster made for your gun is the best way to keep it secure and comfortable. A comfortable holster is essential for carrying a firearm. You will be more likely to carry if you feel you don’t need to struggle with discomfort.
Keep Your Head Down
Your duty carrying a concealed weapon is to be trained in its use. Until you know how to react, you are not a hero, but a danger to yourself and others. Be sure you are properly trained in using your weapon and consider taking a class if needed.
Don’t Be a Hero
Safety with firearms is a mentality. Guns cause escalation of violence, any act with a firearm instantly, becomes a life and death situation. A gun used in protection is a last resort only when your life or the life of another is on the life. Training with a firearm is not desired but needed.
It might seem as if we’ve been against guns in the workplace. Nothing could be farther from the truth. Guns are a great tool for defense. Guns level the field for elderly, women, or children. With proper training, CCW makes everyone safer. Carrying a firearm is a responsibility. It can save your life, but proper care needs to be taken.
Carrying a gun is a mentality. If you learn and follow the basics, a gun becomes just another tool in your arsenal. Training and experience brings knowledge and wisdom. Often your best option is to avoid the fight, but it is better to be protected than unarmed.
Be safe out there,