The Department of Administrative Services, at the direction of Governor Kate Brown, has adopted a policy prohibiting all state employees from having a licensed firearm for self defense on “all property and facilities owned, leased, rented or otherwise occupied by the Oregon state government including grounds, buildings, parking structures and lots, vehicles and other equipment and any site where an employee enters on behalf of the employee’s employment with Oregon state government except for an employee’s home (including employees who live in state housing)…”
This policy extends to “All employees, including limited duration and temporary employees, board and commission members, volunteers, and others working in an agency…”
The policy also forbids “knobkerries” and states that biological and chemical weapons are not considered “sporting equipment” under this rule.(We are unaware of any knobkerrie attacks by state workers.)
As stated, even civilian volunteers on boards are prohibited from having the means to protect themselves. “Serving utensils” will still be permitted.
In a press release issued today House Rep. Duane Stark said:
“I am still researching details on this policy change but this sounds like a serious encroachment on 2nd amendment rights of tens of thousands of state employees and volunteers working in state agencies across Oregon.”
House Rep. Carl Wilson said :
“State employees have a right to defend themselves and it is sad to see state bureaucrats take that away. I am extremely concerned about this policy and will be talking with others in the legislature to see how we can fix this to protect the rights of law abiding citizens who work in state government.”
Senate Republican Leader Ted Ferrioli said:
“The governor’s administration has no business confiscating self-defense rights from public servants, volunteers and others, who have committed themselves to serving our state. Oregonians should be outraged that public servants are now endangered due to a seemingly political agenda at the cost of safety.”
As you might expect, Kate Brown will still be provided around the clock, armed protection by the Oregon State Police. Brown has expressed no concerns about guns in her workplace. She just does not trust any state employee who is not charged with protecting her.
This a very dangerous policy and a slap in the face to state workers, and DAS and Brown have not provided a single example of a state employee with a CHL abusing that right or threatening anyone. Brown’s campaigns have been largely funded by public employees unions. It will be interesting to see how they respond to this latest insult.