Contact: Sid Salter
STARKVILLE, Miss.— Mississippi State University President Mark E. Keenum expressed serious concerns over the potential impacts and ramifications of Mississippi House Bill 1083, which passed the Mississippi House of Representatives earlier today:
“We have a fundamental responsibility to protect our students, faculty, staff and visitors to our campus. In recent years, the Mississippi Board of Trustees of Institutions of Higher Learning adopted policies to allow concealed weapons into ‘public’ venues on campus, but has not allowed firearms into areas determined ‘non-public’ such as classrooms and residence halls. We have great concerns about the prospect of a broad expansion of the existing IHL policies regarding firearms being brought onto campus because of the increased risk it would pose for every member of our campus community.
”I believe that a majority of the parents of the outstanding young people we are entrusted with educating and nurturing share my concerns about the passage of this bill and with it the introduction of firearms into our classrooms and our residence halls,” Keenum said.
As president of the Southeastern Conference, Keenum also spoke to a statement issued on HB 1083 by SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey in which the conference raised dire concerns about the future of conference sporting events at MSU and the University of Mississippi should the state adopt this legislation. Commissioner Sankey’s statement is attached.
MSU is Mississippi’s leading university, available online at www.msstate.edu.