by Michael Robison, The Gateway Pundit:
Governor Ron DeSantis of Florida is making another bold move for the residents of his state, signing a bill that bars the state from prohibiting religious services during any emergency declaration.
The bill would work to protect religious groups, such as churches, and allow the continuation of public gatherings within the organization, even during events such as the recent COVID-19 pandemic under certain circumstances.
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Senate Bill 254, which passed through the state senate in January, states that an emergency declaration “may not directly or indirectly prohibit a religious institution from conducting regular religious services or activities.”
The caveat exception in the bill allows for a halt of services or gatherings only when all businesses are required to close.
Defining such services and gatherings as “essential” places religious organizations in the same category as grocery stores, gas stations, and other entities that can remain open for basic provisions during an emergency declaration.
SB 254 was introduced through the state legislature after religious institutions were deemed “non-essential” throughout the United States during the coronavirus pandemic.
The bill’s sponsor, Republican Senator Jason Brodeur, said that the legislation would prevent future bans on places of worship under a state of emergency.