Iowa Universities to Allow Campus Police to Carry Guns

IOWA CITY, Iowa – In a 6-2 vote by the Iowa state Board of Regents, certified police officers at Iowa State University (ISU), the University of Iowa (UI) and the University of Northern Iowa (UNI) will now be allowed to carry guns as standard equipment.

The vote was cast Oct. 31 with regents Michael Gartner, the board president, and Rose Vasquez voting against arming campus police.

Supporters of the move included presidents and public safety directors from the universities and also Gov. Chet Culver. The regents requested the comprehensive security policy in September. It was composed with input by public safety directors.

When the arming will take place is unsure, as each university will make the decision for its facility.

The policy also states that an annual report should be sent to the board. The report must address the status of safety and security, which includes threat assessment, training of personnel and mass communication abilities.

In addition, officials from the three universities must:

  • Execute a system for emergency communication, which includes voice and text messaging systems and outdoor warning systems
  • Execute protocols for early identification, management and evaluation of individuals who may pose a threat to themselves or others
  • Require all campus police officers to pass state firearms training standards in terms of frequency and scope. Officers will have to qualify semiannually to prove proficiency, safe handling techniques and weapon retention.

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