- Associated Press - Thursday, December 3, 2015

MANHATTAN, Kan. (AP) - Forty distinguished professors from Kansas State University have signed a letter to the state Legislature, seeking a halt to plans to allow concealed weapons on campus.

The Wichita Eagle (http://bit.ly/1IFhrKd ) reports that the letter was posted to the university’s website Wednesday morning. The professors are asking the Legislature to grant universities “permanent relief” from the Kansas Personal and Family Protection Act.

The professors said that allowing concealed weapons would not prevent intentional shootings, but may lead to more suicides and accidental shootings.

In the letter, the professors said “University classrooms, labs, libraries, athletic venues, and other public spaces bring people in close proximity to one another. Accidental shootings cannot occur in the absence of guns and we believe more guns will increase the likelihood of accidental shootings of our co-workers, our students and the guests who come to our campuses.”

Professors say the law would also make it more difficult to recruit faculty and students to the university.

The law set a schedule for opening public buildings to concealed carry of firearms, unless the building is secured with metal detectors and armed guards. State universities are scheduled to allow concealed weapons on campuses by July 1, 2017.

The school’s Board of Regents is trying to come up with a policy that complies with the law but minimizes gun danger on campus. A draft policy would require that attendees at sporting events go through a full metal-detector screening, instead of the current bag searches currently conducted at most events.

State Rep. John Whitmer said that if the regents request it, there is a possibility of legislators giving serious consideration to a compromise bill that would still allow guns on campus, but let universities restrict them in areas like laboratories where an accidental discharge could cause an explosion or release hazardous chemicals or biological material.

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Information from: The Wichita (Kan.) Eagle, http://www.kansas.com

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