New Law Allows Concealed Carry Guns Inside Restaurants and Bars
Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America North Carolina chapter is asking diners to talk to restaurant managers about the state’s new gun law and to only patronize restaurants that prohibit concealed weapons.
The new state law allows individuals with a valid concealed carry permit to bring concealed weapons into bars and restaurants that serve alcohol. However, owners of these businesses are legally allowed to post signs that forbid concealed weapons or all weapons. The law goes into effect today.
“Not one person I’ve spoken to, including customers, has thought that bringing loaded weapons near alcohol is a good idea, including several concealed carry permit holders,” said Haldeman. “Restaurants and bars shouldn’t expose their employees or customers to a potentially dangerous situation involving guns and alcohol. As moms, we don’t want to put our families in these situations.”
Currently, North Carolina gun laws DO NOT:
- Require gun dealers to conduct a background check if a firearm purchaser presents a state permit to purchase or possess firearms that meets certain conditions, exempting the state from the federal background check requirement;
- Provide local law enforcement with discretion to deny a license to carry firearms;
- Require more than 8 hours of training to receive a concealed carry license;
- License or significantly regulate firearms dealers; or
- Regulate ammunition sales.
North Carolina members of Moms Demand Action have been making in-person visits to several hundred restaurants in the Triangle, Triad, Charlotte, and Wilmington areas since the bill became law this past summer. The grassroots movement is asking all North Carolinians to have similar conversations wherever they dine in the state, and to eat only at restaurants that protect the safety of staff and patrons by prohibiting weapons. The group has also created the North Carolina Moms Safe Dining Pledge in reaction to the law that took effect today, members can sign at http://www.credomobilize.com/p/NCGunFree.
Recently, Starbucks CEO Howard Schulz announced in an open letter that customers are no longer welcome to bring firearms into stores nation-wide. Similarly, restaurant owners should understand that they have a choice to not allow firearms on their property. Moms Demand Action will offer window seals to any interested North Carolina business that states: “NO FIREARMS ALLOWED.”
“We’ve found during our canvassing that very few restaurants have even heard of this new law,” said Kaaren Haldeman, leader of the Moms Demand Action North Carolina chapter.
Haldeman and her group cite recent cases in which concealed carry permit-holders have posed a danger in public places. For example, in August, a Wake Forest mother was shot with her own concealed handgun in a Staples store when her toddler reached into the mother’s purse and fired it.
“We ask all the time about guns when our kids go on play dates,” said Haldeman. “Now North Carolina moms need raise our voices and let the restaurants we visit know that we don’t wish to eat in establishments that allow loaded concealed firearms.”