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WIU Tweaks Gun Policy

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Don Harder
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Flickr Creative Commons

State law requires all public and private schools across all levels of education report when a student is determined to pose a clear and present danger within 24 hours. Western Illinois University is updating its gun policy to better reflect that stipulation.

“By law anybody that exhibits violent behavior, assaultive behavior or suicidal type behavior the state police wants to become aware of that even if they are not current concealed carry permit holders,” said Scott Harris, the Director of Public Safety.

Harris said that could potentially affect a person’s ability to get or keep a concealed carry permit.

The university’s gun policy is a living document that will be updated to reflect any future changes made to the state statute by lawmakers.

“I think we are fortunate in the state of Illinois in that while we may be the last to enact concealed carry hopefully we are using best practices from other states,” Harris said.

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Credit Screencap / armedcampuses.org
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armedcampuses.org
State laws regarding concealed carry on college campuses

In Illinois, guns are banned from buildings and sports fields on college campus but allowed in parking lots if the gun is in a case and kept either in the glove compartment, center console or locked trunk of a vehicle.

Universities even have the ability to designate which parking lots to allow concealed carry in. But Harris said they’ve decide against making that designation at Western because of public safety concerns.

All conceal carry permit holders receive 16 hours of training that includes where you can carry. Harris says not knowing the law will not be a valid excuse for having a gun in a prohibited area.

Emily Boyer is a former reporter at Tri States Public Radio.