JPFO Alerts


Jews For The Preservation of Firearms Ownership, Inc.
P.O. Box 270143
Hartford, WI 53027

Phone (800) 869-1884
Fax (425) 451-3959

January 15, 2000


Not long after the incident in Hawaii where a criminal attacked and killed several employees in a Xerox facility, JPFO contacted five top Xerox corporate officials. We obtained the names and addresses of these officials from their website, and sent personalized letters to each of them.

In the letter we warned them about the seriously dangerous problems that their blanket no-firearms policy might cause. Bluntly stated, prohibiting employees from defending themselves essentially set up the employees as targets for the next vicious attacker. To date Xerox has not responded to the JPFO letter, and we are unaware of any action the corporation has taken to further protect employees in office buildings and warehouses.

But now Xerox has been warned. If another attack occurs in a Xerox office building, it might be possible for the victims to sue Xerox for failing to heed warnings ... and a lawsuit like that could be a major wake-up call.

Theres a strategy here. First, people can continue to write to Xerox and demand to know why Xerox so far has refused to answer the JPFO letter. These letters help by pressuring Xerox to avoid taking a position in favor of victim disarmament. Xerox must be reminded that it lost employees and public good will by rendering them disarmed and defenseless.

Second, people can modify the same letter and send it to the heads of other corporations. Put these corporations on notice that by their anti-firearms policies, and their (possible) support of "gun control," they are placing their employees and business visitors into danger without allowing those people any way to protect themselves. Remind the corporations that they face potential legal liability for their negligence in this area.

Use this letter to help turn corporate America on its head. Just paste it into your word processor, adjust the facts and insert the correct names and addresses, personalize it so that it comes from you or your organization, and then send it out. Let JPFO know if you send a letter, and what response you get. JPFO will post the results on the website for the world to see.

To make the letter most effective, use the cases and statutes that apply in your state or in the state where the company is located. You can get these cases and statutes from Dial 911 and Die. Or you can just use Dial 911 and Die as your legal reference point, citing the page number. Order the book directly from the JPFO website or by calling (800) 869-1884.


Dear [Mr. _____]:

Your corporation suffered negative publicity recently when a criminal killed and injured a number of Xerox employees in a Xerox facility in Hawaii. Our organization carefully monitors workplace conditions where citizens are placed in physical jeopardy by the actions and policies of their government or employers. We are writing to offer some thoughts to help and to ask for your response.

In the last two years, there have been many well-publicized cases in which criminals attacked unarmed and undefended employees, teachers and school children in public places. The incident in your facility was one among the series. While Department of Justice figures show violent crime rates dropping on average nationwide, there appears to be an upsurge of murderous attacks on unarmed and undefended people in schools and office buildings.

Each of these public attack cases occurred in places where the innocent victims were not only undefended but were also forbidden to defend themselves adequately. In the Xerox case, for example, the attacker faced no armed opposition whatsoever. It seems rather logical that the attacker would choose the Xerox facility precisely because the attacker had good reason to believe that he would not face any armed resistance.

We have been informed that Xerox corporate policies prohibit employees from carrying firearms or other weapons on the premises (security guards excepted). This policy, however, virtually assures that Xerox employees will be unarmed and undefended targets for violent criminals.

In effect, Xeroxs anti-weapons policy creates a dangerous working condition for the employees and visitors on the property. The policy "may be said to have created an especial temptation and opportunity for criminal misconduct." Cohen v. Southland Corp., 157 Cal. App. 3d 130, 140-41 (1994)(Southland Corp. could be liable for failing to protect customers from criminal attack on their premises). Although it seems like an obvious point, recent comprehensive research has confirmed that criminals tend to avoid assaulting, raping or attempting to murder people whom the criminals think might be armed. See John R. Lott, Jr., More Guns, Less Crime: Understanding Crime and Gun Control Laws (University of Chicago Press, 1998). The Xerox anti-weapons policy sets up a favorable target for attackers.

For two reasons it is not enough for Xerox to respond to the threat of criminal attack by merely providing telephones for employees to "dial 911" for emergency help. First, less than 5 percent of all calls dispatched to police are made quickly enough for officers to stop a crime or arrest a suspect. Gordon Witkin, Monika Guttman & Tracy Lenzy, This is 911 ... please hold, U.S. News & World Report, June 17, 1996, p. 30. As researchers put it, "cases in which 911 technology makes a substantial difference in the outcome of criminal events are extraordinarily rare." Ibid, quoting the conclusions of the researchers, Northeastern University Professor George Kelling and lawyer Catherine Coles.

Second, under the law in nearly every state the government generally owes no duty to protect individual citizens from crime or criminal attack. See e.g., Freitas v. City and County of Honolulu, 574 P.2d 529, 532 (Haw. 1978), citing Riss v. City of New York, 240 N.E.2d 860 (N.Y. 1968). To verify this legal fact, we researched the law in all 50 states. We can supply you with a book entitled Dial 911 and Die, which collects the statutes and court decisions, if the legal references will assist you. Legally, in most cases the victims are on their own to defend themselves.

The Xerox corporate anti-weapons policy would seem to place Xerox in a difficult situation. By assuring the criminals that the victims are unprotected, Xerox is creating a dangerous workplace environment for which Xerox may face liability. Providing handy emergency telephones and depending upon local police forces to protect the employees under violent attack will likely not save any lives.

Knowing the facts set forth in this letter, would Xerox management consider adjusting the no-weapons policy to allow non-violent, non-criminal employees to carry firearms or other protective weapons into the workplace for self-defense? If not, what measures will Xerox take to protect its unarmed and otherwise defenseless employees from future attacks like the one in Hawaii?

We look forward to your response to our questions, and appreciate your help in this matter.

Very truly yours,

Aaron Zelman
Executive Director


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