DoD Issues Guidelines For Military To Carry Private Weapons On Base

It has been a while coming, but on November 18 the Department of Defense (DoD) issued guidelines that lay out the rules and policy that would allow DoD personnel (including military personnel) to carry weapons while on duty, on bases, and to also use deadly force under certain circumstances. The policy was  approved by Deputy Secretary of Defense Robert Work and is called “Arming and the Use of Force.”

Within the document, which is rather lengthy, are special guidelines for all service members (Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force and Coast Guard) to carry privately owned weapons on DoD property (bases). Generally, commanders who are 0-5 or above, may allow certain personnel to carry (concealed or open) privately owned firearms for personal protection that are not associated with their duty performance or activities. There are restrictions:

The applicants must be at least 21 years old. This is the age most states require for residents to own and carry firearms. Applicants can use concealed weapon licenses that are valid under federal, state, local or host-nation law (where the military base or DoD property is located) as proof of compliance.

concealed-carry141In addition, the commander’s permission is only valid for 90 days, unless a longer period is deemed appropriate.

Also, being granted permission to carry would not automatically protect the service member from personal liability should he or she cause injury or death to another person, or from property damage if the discharge is ruled “negligent” and not within the scope of the policy directive.

Applicants should not be subject to past or pending disciplinary action under the UCMJ (Uniform Code of Military Justice). They should not be involved in any civilian criminal cases.

Those who carry cannot be under the influence of alcohol or other intoxicating or hallucinatory drugs or substances that would impair their judgment.

In the past, military personnel were not allowed to carry personal weapons on base. The change is due to recent attacks on service personnel from “active shooters” at various military installations. Lawmakers, and some military leaders, have argued that military personnel should be allowed the ability to protect themselves from threats. Often cited in these arguments is the Chattanooga attacks in which one sailor and four Marines were killed by shooter Muhammad Youssef Abdulazeez, who was killed by police.

Disclaimer: The content in this article is the opinion of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the policies or opinions of US Patriot Tactical.


Robert Partain

Robert Partain

Robert Partain has been a professional writer for over 25 years. He spent ten years on active duty in the Army working as a medic and training NCO. While he covers any topic associated with military life, he specializes in writing about legislation that can affect active duty service members and veterans. Robert currently lives in the small town of Arab, Alabama.
Robert Partain

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