One thing we very much need this session is a change to the CHL laws or property laws similar to what Oklahoma's Gov. Brad Henry signed into law on March 31st 2004. In part, what that law reads is...
"No person, property owner, tenant, employer or business entity shall be permitted to establish any policy or rule that has the effect of prohibiting any person, except a convicted felon, from transporting and storing firearms in a locked vehicle on any property set a side for any vehicle."
I don't think we need exactly this, but something like it would be a great benefit. As it stands now a CHL holder can lose his job, without recourse, if he chooses to travel to work armed - leaving his sidearm in his locked vehicle after arrived at work. This is just wrong. Perhaps a civil suit against an employer of someone, who is seriously injured or killed in route to or from work, when his sidearm might have prevented such, will fix this. But, why should it cost someone his or her life to fix it. Nuts!
I don't think most employers would be against such a law, if I go by a high ranking official in my company. His comments were that they have chosen an unofficial, unwritten and you didn't hear it from me "don't ask - don't tell" policy. He said that if they put this in writing, then they would be open to a civil suit if something bad happened concerning a gun in an employee's vehicle if they had the ability to prohibit it being there. In the past, employee's had arrived at work with rifles in gun racks (trucks) and security simply asked them move them to someplace in the vehicle where they could not be seen, and please don't bring it back (butt covering ending request). This corporate honcho did make the comment that if the CHL law was changed to prevent them from prohibiting CHL holders from having firearms in their cars in a company parking lot, it would suit him just fine because then their corporate rear ends would be covered against a civil suit. "Hey, we followed the law." This doesn't alway work to preventing suits, but it goes a long long way towards thwarting and winning them.
At many company locations there is alternative parking available near by and it doesn't have to be an issue. In my situation however, the next nearest parking area is 13 miles away. I simply choose to travel armed and then lock my sidearm in the glove compartment of my vehicle. My decision, but I would prefer that my peace loving, law-abiding posterior be legally covered.
I think we need something protecting law abiding citizens and CHL holders while having firearms in parking areas when the firearm is; 1) not readily visible from the outside, 2) secured in a locked vehicle or permanently anchored locked device, and 3) as long as it does not violate any state or federal laws.
This should apply to employers, government offices and business owner's general parking areas. Were I work we have two parking areas. One in general which is a semi-unsecured forward area and another that is beyond a controlled gate and security guards. Only an anointed few are allowed to park inside the secured area, but all are welcome to park in the forward general parking area. This would create an alternative for those who have a CHL and do not wish to park beyond the gated and guarded area. I don't think this should apply to private property not open to the public or employees. If you have a situation like this I think it should be OK to prohibit in the secured area as long as alternative parking is available. I think the same could apply if alternative aprking areas were available within a reasonable walking distance (like maybe 100 yards maximum)
If you think this would be worthwhile legislation, please send hand written letters to all of your state representatives and the Texas State Rifle Association - attn. Alice Tripp. Hand written letters have a 10-fold impact over form letters and about a 3-1 effect overtyped letters (so I am told). The TSRA (Texas State Rifle Association) has a web site that has link to your state reps.
My letters will go out before the end of the week and I will send duplicates about a month later.
My 2 Cents - Thanks