Guns in the workplace. Interesting topic among HR pros, in that everyone agrees you can't bring one on your person into the building, but there's a lot of confusion on whether you can enforce a policy that says employees can't have a firearm in their car while on company property.
Here's what I hear when I talk to other HR pros about the topic:
2. "You can't ban it - they have the right to have that firearm in their car as long as it is not on their person."
3. "You could ban it, but then to enforce it you would have to do an illegal search and seizure of their car if you had suspicion they were packing."
4. "I know I can ban, but if I clarify the policy, I'm going to upset a lot of people who are currently packing in their cars. So I'm going to leave it alone.
My take has always been you need a policy that says firearms are never OK on company property, including locked, parked vehicles. I always figured I would work through all the issues related to a search if I got to that point, which I hoped I never did.
Now comes Florida Governor Charlie Crist, signing a law that protects the right to keep a loaded gun in your car, as long as it's locked up:
"With the stroke of a pen, Governor Charlie Crist has made it legal for Floridians to take their guns to work and keep the weapon locked in their car.
Crist signed the bill into law Tuesday, and it will go into effect July 1st.
The law says businesses cannot stop employees or customers from keeping a gun locked inside their car.
Some places, like schools and prisons, are still off limits."
Welcome to America. I'm a big constitutional rights guy, but clearly businesses need to have the right to require workers to leave the guns at home . . . if for no other reason than to diffuse the crazy situations that come up at any business.