Can we ban guns in the workplace?

Q. May an employer prohibit employees who are licensed by the state of Texas to carry a concealed firearm from bringing firearms onto the employer’s property?

Yes. An employer may prohibit an employee from carrying firearms on its property without regard to whether he or she possesses a concealed-handgun license.

Such a license allows holders to carry a concealed firearm in most public places—including places of business. (A licensee may not carry a concealed firearm in certain establishments, including bars, hospitals, churches or synagogues and nursing homes.)

The law does not limit the right of public or private employers to prohibit people from carrying concealed handguns on the employer’s premises.

Employers may also prohibit nonemployees from carrying firearms on their property. An employer (or its agent) must give written or oral notice that entry upon the property or remaining on the property with a firearm is forbidden. Written notice is sufficient only if it is posted on the property in both English and Spanish in contrasting colors with block letters at least one inch high, and displayed in a conspicuous manner clearly visible to the public. The notice must contain the following language:

“Pursuant to Section 30.06, Penal Code (trespass by holder of license to carry a concealed handgun), a person licensed under Article 4413 (29ee), Revised Statutes (concealed handgun law), may not enter this property with a concealed handgun.”

In light of recent legislation in Florida, Georgia and Louisiana that allows employees to possess guns locked in vehicles in employers’ parking lots, this is an issue that could very well change after the next Texas legislative session, which starts in January.