Just a reminder folks:
Though this may not apply to you, the city is expecting a fair amount of people in downtown Richmond for the gun rights rally. This is also a national holiday (Martin Luther King Day) so schools will be out.
The following is a note from the Richmond Police Department:
The Richmond Police Department would like to make you aware of Lobby Day this Monday at the Virginia State Capitol. It’s expected to attract a much larger crowd than usual due to high interest in gun control legislation now before the Virginia General Assembly.
LAW ENFORCEMENT COMMITMENT
It is the goal of the RPD and other law enforcement agencies to ensure Lobby Day participants have: 1. the right to assemble 2. the right to free speech 3. the assurance of personal safety
DISRUPTIONS – TRAFFIC & PARKING
If you live or work in the area surrounding Capitol Square, downtown, you should expect disruptions to your usual routines. 1. Streets in the immediate vicinity will be closed most of the day to accommodate the overflow crowd that is anticipated. Vehicles parked on those streets will be towed. Signs mark those locations. (road closures map is attached) 2. Parking will be at a premium 3. GRTC bus schedules will be affected (http://ridegrtc.com/…/lobby-day-road-closures-and-grtc-det…/)
WEAPONS BAN/OPEN CARRY
Governor Ralph Northam has issued an emergency order that bans weapons from Capitol Square from Friday evening until Tuesday evening. You may see lots of weapons. Since Virginia Is an “open carry” state, citizens are allowed to carry weapons openly. They are encouraged to keep their handguns holstered and their long weapons on shoulder slings/muzzle down.
BUSINESS IMPACT – WEAPONS ON DISPLAY
Many of the attendees are coming from across the state and out-of-state. They may choose to remain in the area after Lobby Day ends in mid-afternoon to tour the area, shop and/or eat. As a result, some of your patrons may be carrying weapons in plain sight – which is their legal right. They are generally not statutorily prohibited from bringing firearms onto private property. However, a property owner or lessee can refuse to allow firearms onto their property.
ADVICE – STAY INFORMED
Everyone should stay informed throughout the day on Monday of events in and around Capitol Square. Keep up with news reports on Lobby Day. You may also follow the official Lobby Day Twitter and Facebook accounts at @VACapitol2020
If you hear something or see activity that seems out of line, do not take action yourself. Call 911 or notify a nearby officer. They are trained to deal with all eventualities and can easily call on backup should they require it. Let’s all show the nation how Virginia – and especially Richmond – can make the most of this day.