An impressive number of concealed carry permits were issued in Ohio during the third quarter of 2016, meaning approximately 1 in 16 adults in the Buckeye State is now a concealed-carry permit holder.
Authorities say a record 25,474 permits were issued from July-September, that’s a 59 percent increase compared to the same period in 2015.
The Buckeye Firearms Association, which has tracked permit numbers since concealed carry was authorized in 2004, said there are now 574,000 active permits in Ohio and the state recognizes 12.3 million permits from other states.
The new Ohio total for the first nine months this year is 93,851.
“Many of the people who sign up for my class, they’re watching the news and they’re hearing what happening not only here but across the country,” said CCW instructor Todd Karam, owner of the Cleveland Armory.
Karam said citizens only need to watch the nightly news to make them cognizant of the fact “that something might happen to them.”
Gun ownership is “becoming mainstream,” said Jim Irvine, President of the Firearms Association. Irvine said the it’s the increase in gun owners that is responsible for concealed-carry instructors being “swamped with demand for their classes.”
“Concealed carry used to be mostly hard-core shooters, but it has become increasingly popular with soccer moms and others who just want to be safe in their everyday life,” Irvine said.
The terrorist attack which took place last month on the Ohio State University campus may have also contributed to an already increasing number of gun owners and concealed-carry permit holders in the Buckeye State.
Still awaiting Governor John Kasich’s signature is Senate Bill 199, which would allow legal permit holders to carry their firearms further, like college campuses, day-care centers and specified government properties.
The legislation would also ban employers from prohibiting employees from storing guns in their vehicles on company property and allow active military personnel with weapons training to carry concealed handguns without a permit.