LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – The Arkansas chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, a part of Everytown for Gun Safety, today released the statement below in response to House passage of an amended version of HB 1249, which would force Arkansas’ public colleges and universities to allow anyone with a concealed carry permit and minimal training to carry hidden, loaded handguns on campus – including in classrooms, offices and most places on campus. The bill also allows concealed carry permit holders to carry hidden, loaded handguns in sensitive areas throughout the state, after the Senate amended the bill to not only force guns onto college campuses, but also to force public buildings and parks to allow guns and to allow guns at crowded sporting events, bars and airports throughout the state. Nationwide, polling shows that 95 percent of college presidents and 94 percent of college faculty oppose guns on campus.
STATEMENT FROM AUSTIN BAILEY, VOLUNTEER CHAPTER LEADER WITH THE ARKANSAS CHAPTER OF MOMS DEMAND ACTION FOR GUN SENSE IN AMERICA:
“The Arkansas House passed a dangerous bill today that will put the safety of the Arkansans throughout the state at risk. The recent amendment, which allows guns in additional places where they shouldn’t be – like bars, sporting events and airports – goes in the opposite direction of addressing the concerns raised by university presidents, law enforcement and citizens throughout the bill’s consideration. If this bill is enacted, students will wonder whether the classmate, professor or visitor walking next to them on campus is carrying a hidden, loaded gun. Parents who take their children to soccer games at the local park will have to wonder if the competitive mom or dad next to them is packing heat. There’s no way that this legislation won’t negatively affect our communities if it becomes the law. We urge Governor Hutchinson to veto this dangerous bill immediately.”