Earlier this week, New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms and over two dozen churches filed a federal lawsuit claiming that the so-called Concealed Carry Improvement Act (CCIA), a New York gun control law passed in July 2022, violates the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution.
In a different lawsuit, Judge Glenn T. Suddaby of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of New York temporarily blocked large swaths of the CCIA from going into effect. Attorney David Sieling of Brenna Boyce PLLC, who represents New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms in its lawsuit, commented: “Judge Suddaby held that the Constitution demands an exception to the law prohibiting the carrying of firearms in places of worship and religious observance. The order directs the defendants, including Governor Kathy Hochul, to interpret the prohibition against carrying firearms, rifles, and shotguns in churches as not applying to ‘that e been tasked with the duty to keep the peace at the place of worship or religious observance.’ The Court described this exception as necessary to avoid ‘infringing [upon] one’s First Amendment right to practice religion by attending congregate religious services.’”
Sieling continued, “This ruling is a victory for every house of worship in New York. Still, it is only a first step. Judge Suddaby’s order does not go into effect until after this Sunday, October 9, 2022, and only remains pending another hearing in that case. Also, church leaders deserve greater clarity on their right to designate a security team authorized to defend places of worship without interference from the State of New York.”
Rev. Jason J. McGuire, the executive director of New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms and a plaintiff in the church lawsuit, said, “Today’s order is a solid step in the right direction. In time, we expect to see even greater relief from the courts. For now, we are thankful that a court has recognized that church leaders must be free to provide for the safety of their flocks.”
Source: “Judge Finds Portions of NY’s Gun Control Law Unconstitutional,” GeneseeSun.com