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New York restaurants adjust to new gun-carry rules

Customers can now pack heat while dining so long as the restaurant posts permission to do so and doesn't serve alcohol.
Photograph: Shutterstock

Restaurants in New York are adjusting to a new set of regulations that govern when and where consumers can carry a handgun while dining out.

As of Sept. 1, places that don’t sell alcoholic beverages can allow guests to carry a pistol during their visit by expressly granting permission via a posted sign or a verbal go-ahead from management.  Only patrons with a concealed-carry permit from the state can bring the firearm with them.

Guns remain banned from any establishment that sells beer, wine or liquor.

They are also prohibited from “sensitive locations” where weapons have caused extraordinary harm in the past, such as in schools, houses of worship, airports, hospitals, parks, entertainment venues and transportation facilities, including New York City’s subway system.

The Times Square area of the city has also been designated as a gun-free zone because of its high volume of traffic and tourism.

Establishments have the option of outlawing the concealed carry of a gun within their premises by posting a sign stating that firearms are forbidden.  

Assault weapons such as semi-automatic rifles remain forbidden from public areas.

The new regulations are the result of a U.S. Supreme Court decision that overturned a century-old state law governing the possession of concealed firearms—gun-speak for pistols. The law required anyone who desired to carry a handgun outside their home or place of business to prove a need for being armed.

The Court struck down that measure as a violation of the U.S. Constitution’s Second Amendment.

State officials responded by passing a new law stipulating the conditions under which a person with a concealed-carry permit can have their weapon with them. 

It also set new standards for granting a permit, including requirements that the applicant undergo 18 hours of training, list their social media accounts for the last three years, disclose who else resides in their household, and submit to an interview.

The licensing process and rules for someone who wants to keep a gun in their home or business remain unchanged.

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