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Follow up question to Can an employer be forced to allow an employee to bring a gun to work (Washington State)?

It appears that an employer can limit employee concealed carry.

(It would also seem that if the employee had a firearm in an appropriate gun safe in the vehicle, the employer would have little or no control over it.)

This leaves the employee at risk traveling between the office and the vehicle. It seems reasonable as well that as the employer prohibits the employee's self defence, they would be responsible for the employees defence between office and some safe location (in this case, the vehicle).

Can an employer be required to provide an escort from office to vehicle?

The original question specifies Washington State, but I would be interested in answers for any US state.

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    When I worked for Texas Instruments many years ago, we were told in an orientation talk that firearms were not allowed on company property and it was clearly pointed out that the parking lot was company property. – George White Oct 25 at 2:34
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    The underlying assumption here is that the employer is responsible for the employee's defense at all. Do you have any source to back up that this might be the case? – DreamConspiracy Oct 25 at 3:39
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    @DreamConspiracy the sign outside my office says "For the safety of... No weapons.." I would call that a clear indicator of the employer being responsible for the employees safety/defense. My employer does offer escorts on request. This question looks for legal requirements for it. – James Jenkins Oct 25 at 13:46
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    @JamesJenkins that sounds like your employer choosing to be a good employer and looking out for the safety of their employees. Nothing there indicates that the employer has any responsibility to do so. – DreamConspiracy Oct 25 at 14:51
  • Which is the point of the question........ – James Jenkins Oct 25 at 14:57
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Can an employer be required to provide an escort from office to vehicle?

No, at least, not on the theory articulated in the question.

I can imagine some circumstances where it is conceivable that there might be a duty arising from some other source, like an OSHA regulation applied to a firing range business, or an express contract with the employee (some employers provide an escort as a matter of right in the evenings or at other high risk times, as an employee benefit, especially college and university employers, in part, because they have worker's compensation liability while an employee is still on a large campus, in part because it helps attract employees who may feel vulnerable, and in part because of an attitude that the employer wants its employees to be safe at dangerous times of day and this shows that the employer cares about them), or a court injunction related to a labor-management dispute where the employee is a scab.

There is no such employer duty, but an employer does have strict liability in almost every case (there are some minor exceptions for very small employers and criminal conduct by an employee who is injured when the criminal conduct is clearly outside the scope of duty of the employee) for injuries and death in the course of employment from any cause whatsoever pretty much (including criminal actions of third-parties) which is generally fully insured by worker's compensation insurance.

The exact details of when someone ceases to be at work for worker's compensation/employer liability is buried in case law and regulations (for overtime and minimum wage purposes, the standard is "portal to portal" but workers compensation/employer liability need not be identical, although once you are clearly no longer on the employer's premises and commuting after a day's work is done or before a day's work starts, you are clearly not covered).

But, any place where there is employer liability at all, it would be worker's compensation covered.

Usually, if the employer is required to have worker's compensation but doesn't, the employer likewise has strict liability for the same harms, but the damages that may be awarded are not limited to those that worker's compensation policies would cover.

This leaves the employee with at risk travel between the office and the vehicle. It seems reasonable as well that as the employer prohibits the employees self defence, they would be responsible for the employees defence between office and some safe location (i.e. vehicle).

This theory pretty much always loses.

An employee walking in an ordinary, non-wartime environment without a firearm is not "at risk" in a meaningful sense, any more than someone who didn't choose to carry a firearm who goes about their daily life (or is prohibited from carrying one due to past conduct such as a felony or a domestic violence protection order or a domestic violence misdemeanor or a condition of parole, probation or bond pending criminal charges).

Also, the employee is not being prohibited from engaging in any kind of self-defense or protective action whatsoever (or from asserting self-defense rights if a firearm is carried contrary to an employer rule) just from carrying a firearm at that particular moment (on pain of losing a job, not forfeiting a legal affirmative defense under criminal statutes), which is one of many means by which a person can protect themselves from crimes.

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    "An employee walking in an ordinary, non-wartime environment without a firearm is not "at risk" in a meaningful sense" It's possible to construct a scenario where they are (e.g. they managed to anger a criminal cartel that's put a hit out on them for it). – nick012000 Oct 25 at 2:30
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    @nick012000. Sure, but if you know there is a hit contract on you by the local mafia, do you keep on with your normal routine anyway (going to/from work at the same time, same itinerary, park in same place etc ...). Most aspects of your daily routine you have to change are outside of the employer scope. The only thing your employer could help you with is by giving you a leave of abscence to let you get a low profile until things settle ... – Hoki Oct 25 at 9:49
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    You'd be expecting a police escort, not employer escort, if you are somehow under such a direct and imminent threat. That is unless your employment is somehow the cause of your unusual risk to life, like if you are a judge or politician or maybe news anchor I could see the employer being responsible for more of your security. – thorr18 Oct 25 at 21:20
  • Great answer, but half (more) of it is in parentheses. It makes it very difficult to read. – Azor Ahai Oct 29 at 0:51

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