Concealed Carry On Campus

Concealed Carry

The Arkansas concealed carry laws (Acts 562 and 859) went into effect on September 1, 2017, and concealed weapons on campus are allowed if:
  • A person (who generally must be 21 or over, with limited exceptions) holds a valid Arkansas concealed weapon permit, and
  • Holds an endorsement from the Arkansas State Police after successfully completing an additional enhanced certification-training course of up to 8 hours.
  • Concealed carry weapons under this law are limited to handguns. A handgun is defined in Arkansas as “any firearm, other than a fully automatic firearm, with a barrel length of less than twelve inches that is designed, made, or adapted to be fired with one hand.”

With the following prohibitions:
  • Being stored in any college facilities, including classrooms, locker rooms, or offices. (Concealed weapons can only be stored in a locked and unattended motor vehicle in a publicly owned and maintained parking lot.)
  • Northark athletic events and practices with approved security plans.
  • Grievance and disciplinary hearings meeting certain requirements.

Open carry will not be allowed on campus. Handguns must be concealed from public view at all times, and the weapons must always be on the license holder’s person or in close proximity to be readily accessible. Violations of these rules occur when a person knowingly and intentionally displays the gun to another person, or stores (leaves) the handgun in a place other than a locked and unattended motor vehicle.

A handgun may be used in self-defense only as allowed by Arkansas law. By so doing, the person is acting as a private citizen and not as an authorized agent of the college. This means they are liable with respect to the handgun’s use; if they are injured due to his or her own negligent acts in possessing or using a concealed handgun, they are not entitled to worker’s compensation and are not immune from personal liability with respect to possession or use of a concealed handgun. The college is immune from a claim for monetary damages arising from or related to a licensee’s use of, or failure to use, a concealed handgun if the licensee is employed by the college against whom the claim is filed and the licensee elects to possess the concealed handgun under this law.

Under the law, concealed carry holders are required to show their weapons to law enforcement officers if asked to do so. If an officer believes a safety risk exists, he can also disarm an individual. It remains a criminal act to exhibit threatening behavior with a gun, and officers will take appropriate action to respond to such situations. Northark faculty and staff do not have the authority to ban handguns from any location not specified in Acts 562 and 859.

Quick Facts

Concealed handguns are allowed on campus for people (who generally must be 21 or over, with limited exceptions) who hold a valid concealed carry permit and an enhanced concealed carry permit as established by the Arkansas State Police. The Arkansas State Police revised the Arkansas Concealed Handgun Carry License Rules in January 2018 to include enhanced concealed carry licensing and training requirements, restrictions and rules. According to the Arkansas State Police, possession is limited to carrying the handgun on or about the licensee’s person, in a vehicle occupied by the licensee, or otherwise readily available for use. At all times, the licensee must retain the firearm in his or her immediate vicinity (within arm’s reach). A licensee is not authorized to leave the handgun unattended in a separate location for safekeeping or future use, except when the handgun is placed in a locked and unattended motor vehicle in a publicly owned and maintained parking lot as permitted by law. Concealed carry is only allowed on campus if:
  • A person is 21 or over, and
  • Holds an Arkansas concealed weapon permit, and
  • Holds an enhanced concealed weapon permit with up to eight hours of additional training

Open carry is not allowed on campus.

Northark faculty and staff do not have the authority to ban handguns from classrooms.

Concealed weapons are prohibited from:
  • Athletic events and venues

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