I. Policy Statement
The University of Puget Sound is committed to providing a campus environment free from violence, including strictly prohibiting the possession or use of Weapons as defined by this policy on the University Campus by anyone except law-enforcement officials, armored car couriers, or others specifically authorized by the university to support curricular or co-curricular programs and consistent with the university’s commitment to safety.
This policy applies to all University Community Members and Campus Visitors as defined in Section III, below. It also applies to University Community Members attending or participating in a university-sponsored activity off campus.
EXCEPTIONS: This definition does not include objects that are authorized, designated and used in accordance with departmental policies for operational, academic and/or recreational purposes (e.g., cutlery used in dining services operations, tools used in facilities services operations, props used in the theatre department, fencing equipment used in athletics) unless used in a way that is intended to harm another person or property.
This definition also does not prohibit small quantity personal protection chemical spray devices (e.g., key chain sprays) intended for defensive purposes.
IV. Approval of Weapons on Campus
The university strictly prohibits the possession or use of Weapons as defined by this policy on the University Campus by anyone except law-enforcement officials, armored car couriers, or others specifically authorized by the university to support curricular or co-curricular programs.
University Community Members and Campus Visitors who wish to bring any Weapon (as defined by this policy) onto the University Campus must disclose in advance the intent and the intended use of such objects to the Director or Associate Director of Security Services. The university at its sole discretion will grant or deny the authorization and use of any such Weapons on Campus. Authorization will be given or denied by the Director of Security Services, Associate Director of Security Services, or other approved designee, taking into account whether there is a curricular or co-curricular purpose and other safety considerations.
V. Reporting Weapons
The university expects all University Community Members and Campus Visitors to help maintain safety and security at the institution and at university-sponsored activities off campus. All students, faculty, and staff who have knowledge of Weapons on Campus and/or at university-sponsored activities off campus have an obligation to report that knowledge promptly to the Director of Security Services or, in the Director's absence, the Associate Director or an on-duty Security Officer. Any Campus Visitor with such knowledge is strongly encouraged to promptly notify Security Services as well.
VI. Authority and Process for Searches
In cases of suspected possession of weapons by University Community Members or Campus Visitors, the university reserves the right, as stipulated in the Privacy and Appropriate Use of Resources policy, to search personal belongings on the University Campus, including but not limited to articles of clothing, purses, briefcases, bags, and vehicles.
All such searches must be approved in advance by the Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer or, alternatively, the Associate Vice President for Human Resources in the case of staff, or the Provost in the case of faculty, or the Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students in the case of students, or the Associate Vice President for Business Services in the case of Campus Visitors. In the absence of the pertinent university officer, the President may approve the search.
Once approved, Security Services will proceed with conducting the search or may request the involvement of law enforcement officials. Persons may be asked to leave Campus or remain in the presence of Security Services or Tacoma Police until a search is conducted or until the situation is resolved safely and appropriately. Security staff may take weapons discovered in a search into temporary custody, for safe-keeping.
VII. Accountability for Violations
Any student(s) found to have violated this policy by possession or use of weapons on Campus or while attending or participating in a university-sponsored activity off campus is subject to sanctions up to and including expulsion. Sanctions will be imposed in accordance with the procedures of the Student Integrity Code. Violators may be banned from Campus and/or referred to the Tacoma Police Department.
Any faculty, staff and student staff member found to have violated this policy by possession or use of Weapons on Campus or while attending or participating in a university-sponsored activity off campus is subject to sanctions, up to and including termination of employment. Sanctions will be imposed in accordance with the procedures of the Faculty Code, Staff Corrective Action Policy, or the Student Integrity Code as appropriate. Violators may be banned from Campus and/or referred to the Tacoma Police Department.
Any Campus Visitor(s) found to have violated this policy by possession or use of weapons on Campus is subject to immediate expulsion from Campus by Security Services and may be banned from Campus and/or referred to the Tacoma Police Department.
VIII. Related Statutes, Regulations, and Policies
Policy Owner: Security Services
Date Adopted: November 2002
Revised: August 2009
Revised: July 9, 2019