This is a question that I get asked almost daily. I talk with a lot of women at the range, within shooting leagues and women just learning about firearms and personal protection. It is not an easy question to answer but once you have an understanding of proper handling and storage, the answer is yes!
You must understand you can not simply put your firearm in the body of your purse where you have other items. Nor can you put it a separate pocket without the ability to store it properly. Why you have ask? I will address both ways of carrying in a purse.
The first is carrying in the body of your purse. It would seem evident but women have done this with disastrous results. The first reason is the firearm moves around the purse (not in the same place every time), items could become lodged in the muzzle or in the trigger guard, no control over who has access to the firearm. Common sense should kick in carrying this way.
The second is carrying it in a separate pocket. The center pocket of the a purse is where most women will store their firearm. It makes sense on the certain level. Typically, the firearm is the heaviest item in your purse and having in the center would distribute the weight and the purse would not fall over when set down. The problem is when you set the firearm in the pocket without holster or storage mechanism. The weight of the gun itself is uneven. The slide (or top of the gun) is heavier than the grip (or butt of the gun). So gravity takes over and the firearm will flip upside down and it will be butt up in the pocket. Not safe! Try and access it that way and not have a disaster.
The safest way to carry a firearm in your purse is to first: buy a purse that is designed specially to carry a gun. Second: not all conceal carry purses are created equal (or even in the United States).
Next week in my blog, I will discuss the four components that your conceal carry purse MUST have. These four are non-negotiable, your life and the lives of others may depend on it.