Instructor Notes: Polling Place Security / IWB holsters

This weekends training yielded many questions on Polling Place Security. Many students were asking “if then” questions which are hard to answer under normal circumstances. Polling places are federally “gun free zones”, so there is NO tolerance for any form of carry. Federal laws on firearms at polling place are very severe.

A non-lethal alternative to a firearm would be your OC spray. Normally you would AVOID a place that has potential threats, but a polling place is different, you only have one place you can vote at. In this case you can change your time.
LE will be monitoring polling places for violence and threats of intimidation. If your polling place doesn’t have a LE presences, than call them. Wait until they arrive and then go in and vote.

A number of students had Inside the Waste Band holsters. The students that used these for training today no doubt found them a bit more cumbersome to draw from than the folks with OWB, (Out Side the Waste Band) holsters. Unless there is a piece of equipment that truly is not satisfactory I train to what the students have. The Presentation was a bit slower but being able to “look the firearm back into the holster” was much more challenging or lacked efficiency.

One of our main goals in training is to teach techniques that can be consistently performed in the most efficient manner. In this case the students equipment wasn’t “wrong” but just didn’t allow for the most efficient


It is not federal law, but state law that dictates your right to carry at polling locations, unless the location is a GFZ under federal law, such as a school building. In my state, it is allowed, with the above caveat.

I did a quick Internet search, and this site, Alien Gear, was the first I found in it that provided a fairly straightforward answer of it depends on your state laws.