AUSTIN, TX, November 9, 2015 — Gun-Free UT will hold a rally against Campus Carry on Tuesday, November 10, from noon to 1:00pm at the West Mall on the UT-Austin campus. The event will feature live music, various speakers, including survivors of gun violence, and a special appearance by Danielle Vabner, a UT student whose brother died in the Sandy Hook massacre.
Founded in August 2015 by a handful of professors following the passage of Senate Bill 11, also known as Campus Carry, Gun-Free UT has quickly grown into a statewide movement, with thousands at UT campuses from El Paso to Tyler joining in the effort to fight the presence of concealed firearms in dorms, classrooms and offices.
At UT-Austin, the number of departments and colleges publicly opposing the law, now at 28, is growing daily. Among the latest to join the Gun-Free UT effort is the Department of Chemical Engineering. According to their public statement, “We believe that guns in classrooms, laboratories, faculty/advising offices, and collaboration spaces would be unsafe and stifle the free exchange of ideas central to a world-class university…We also fear that SB11 may damage our ability to recruit and retain the most capable students, faculty and staff.”
Beginning on August 1, 2016, Campus Carry will allow holders of concealed handgun licenses to enter any public university buildings in Texas with a concealed firearm, unless the building is officially a gun-free zone. To that end, Gun-Free UT is working to ensure safety of all students, staff and faculty by requesting that UT-Austin President Greg Fenves designate all buildings on campus as gun-free zones. As acknowledged by Steve Goode, chair of the UT Campus Carry Working Group, which is currently debating how to designate gun-free zones on campus, the vast majority of the UT community opposes Campus Carry.
Gun-Free UT is a grassroots organization of UT-Austin students, staff, faculty, parents & alumni dedicated to opposing guns on campus and to keeping them out of dorms, classrooms and offices.
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