Jen Anesi-Brombach: Weapons in the workplace
This spring, while my husband and I were preparing to put our home on the market, we removed our entire gun collection to our nearby friend’s house, where it would be secure while strangers roamed through our home. (They were in a locked gun cabinet, but better safe than sorry, right?)
Last week, we finally retrieved them and tucked them into a safe in the new place. While we were rearranging our rifles and pistols, we vowed to give them all a thorough cleaning very soon, and we also promised each other we’d look into taking a weekend class soon so we can both carry concealed again. (We both let our CPLs lapse last year.)
While I used to carry my pistol on me pretty regularly — a little Ruger .380 because women’s pants pockets are a joke and it’s all that would fit — I fell out of the habit as we migrated farther from Detroit and deeper into the sleepy northern suburbs. But my husband still works in Detroit, and we like having the option to carry if we want to, especially because there was a random shooting about a mile south of where we live just a few months ago, in one of the “safest” neighborhoods in Southeast Michigan.
You never know.
Carrying on the job
Talking about getting our CPLs again reminded me of a guest article that ran a few years ago when I was still at The NEWS. The author discussed, among other things, firearms in the workplace:
“Guns and other weapons are another area that must be carefully considered when crafting workplace violence policies. Gun laws vary by state, so companies should carefully research what is relevant in each state where they operate. For example, in some states, employees are legally permitted to carry firearms in their vehicles. In those states, employers cannot ban all guns from company property.”
After doing a preliminary search online, I couldn’t find any articles in Plumbing & Mechanical that talked about carrying firearms or any other weapons while on the job, and I’m genuinely curious how PM’s readers handle this topic when it comes up. And it’s not an irrelevant topic — you and your employees are entering strangers’ homes daily, often alone and not always in the best neighborhoods. Who’s to say what might happen?
You never know.
What do you think?
Dear readers, I’d love to hear your thoughts on this. Is it a big deal? Or is it better to stick with “don’t ask, don’t tell” when it comes to weapons in the workplace? Some other questions to consider:
- • Do you allow your employees to carry a weapon of any kind on themselves or in their work vehicles? Why or why not?
- • Do you personally carry a weapon, whether a firearm or something else, on service calls? Why or why not?
- • How do you convey your weapons policy to employees, if you have one? And what are the consequences if an employee violates that policy?
- • Have you ever encountered a situation where you needed to protect yourself on the job, or thought you may have to? How did you handle that situation?
So shoot me an email (firstname.lastname@example.org) with your thoughts on firearms and other weapons in the workplace. I look forward to hearing from you.