Thanks to a bill OK’ing concealed carry on Texas campuses that was signed into law last year, campus carry goes into effect on University of Texas campuses today. UT has produced a FAQ document for its largely hoplophobic faculty on the new procedures, but for whatever reason doesn’t want the general public to see it. TTAG, though, has friends in low places and has obtained a copy. We’ll be going through it with a fine-toothed comb, but in the mean time here’s the letter they sent out to the professoriate last week along with a link at the bottom so you can view the FAQ document.
Next Monday, on August 1, the campus carry law goes into effect. Since I sent my last email to you, I have received numerous messages that have helped me think through this complex issue.
Many of you have concerns with this new law; concerns I share. Some expressed your clear dissatisfaction with the law and voiced unease with the policies the university has adopted to comply. Many of you had very specific questions looking for guidance about how to implement the new policies.
Your thoughtful questions raised issues that were not addressed in the previous message, and I asked the Implementation Task Force to help me develop additional guidance.
What does this mean in my classroom? How should I provide oral notice to my students? What about my syllabus? These are just a few of the many questions I received and I have thought about them extensively.
To everyone who took the time to share your thoughts with me, thank you. You have posed questions shared by many faculty.
Based on this feedback, we have created a detailed, faculty-specific FAQ document addressing the questions you raised. While they may not answer every question posed, we have tried to address the most frequently encountered issues.
Download FAQs as a PDF (EID required)
View the faculty FAQ webpage (EID required)
Many of you were also curious how students would learn about the campus carry policies. Based on your feedback, the Implementation Task Force has improved information for students. This includes a webpage on the campus carry website geared towards students, and an updated training module that emphasizes critical information about the law and new policies. It also includes information about exclusion zones, oral notification for faculty offices, and urging those who choose to carry to think through their day.
I will also take this opportunity to let you know that during this process, I have tried to put myself in your shoes and I will continue to do so. The safety of our faculty, staff, and students is my first priority. And as we work together to navigate the implementation of this new law, I will not lose focus on supporting the academic mission of the university, promoting your work and making sure you are able to do what you came here to accomplish.
When this new law goes into effect, I am certain more questions will be raised and we will need to address them. When you have questions, please let us know. We will continue to update the faculty FAQ document as new issues are brought to our attention.
Moving forward, I will ensure we do our very best to respond to your concerns quickly and responsibly, and I look forward to getting to know you all better in the coming months.
Executive Vice President and Provost
The University of Texas at Austin