Title set for measure to limit college concealed guns

Colorado’s Initiative Title Setting Review Board this week set a title for a statutory initiative to limit concealed handguns on Colorado public college and university campuses. A 2012 poll shows 65 percent of Colorado voters are in favor of banning concealed guns on college campuses.

“Concealed handguns on college campuses threaten the safety and peace of mind of parents, students, teachers and staff — and we don’t want our state to become known for any more tragic mass shootings,” said Ken Toltz, parent of two college students, former University of Denver–Daniels College of Business adjunct professor and founder of Safe Campus Colorado.

“This initiative gives Coloradans an opportunity to have their voices heard on keeping concealed handguns off our great colleges and universities. All schools should be safe places to learn and work, free of the threat posed by concealed guns,” Toltz added.

Colorado and Utah are the only two states with no legal restrictions on concealed guns on public college campuses. Colorado’s private colleges may and do prohibit concealed guns, including Colorado Christian University, Regis University and University of Denver.

“As a past Auraria Campus Chief of Police, I can say with certainty that allowing concealed guns on campus makes the job of police officers more difficult,” said Heather Coogan, retired Chief of Police of Littleton, Chief of Campus Police of the Auraria Campus and Deputy Chief of the Denver Police Department, the co-chair of Safe Campus Colorado. “Guns on campus create an intimidating climate and puts the safety of students, teachers and staff at risk,” said Coogan.

Safe Campus Colorado is a new nonpartisan organization formed in October, to advance a ballot initiative adding “public college or university campuses” to the list of public elementary, middle, junior high and high school locations excluded from the state concealed carry statute. With the approval of a title, the organization will begin building a statewide grassroots organization to gather petition signatures to let Colorado voters’ voice be heard on this important public safety issue in November 2014.

Safe Campus Colorado anticipates the approval and granting of a title as a result of the hearing on Jan. 2.