People visiting ThedaCare hospitals and clinics will need to leave all weapons at home or in their cars when Wisconsin’s new concealed carry law takes effect Nov. 1.
Affinity Health System and Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin-Fox Valley, which is on the Theda Clark Medical Center campus in Neenah, will also ban weapons.
Leaders from the healthcare organizations met recently and decided to enforce similar policies that keep concealed weapons off their properties. Visitors to an Affinity or ThedaCare clinic or hospital will see new signs that state no weapons are allowed inside the building.
“We want to ensure that ThedaCare maintains a workplace safe and free of violence for all employees, our patients and our visitors,” said Scott Decker, ThedaCare vice president of quality. “To minimize confusion in our communities, it made logical sense for ThedaCare and Affinity to collaborate on common signage and policies. Doing so should lessen the confusion for patients, visitors and staff at any of our healthcare facilities.”
Under the new law, which was signed by Gov. Scott Walker in July, people over the age of 21 who complete a training course and clear a background check will be issued a permit allowing them to carry concealed weapons.
The new law, however, allows private businesses, the state and municipalities the right to ban concealed weapons from their properties even if they have a permit, as long as it is properly posted.
“It’s been great that Affinity and ThedaCare have been working together to develop and then clearly communicate our policies regarding the new concealed carry law,” said Deb Cross, director of Affinity NurseDirect, emergency management and population health. “Our first concern is caring for our patients and our employees, and not allowing weapons inside our facilities allows us to provide care without fear and violence.”