March 13, 2023
Atlantic City Casinos Ban Firearms
Atlantic City casino owners have announced that firearms will not be allowed inside their establishments. This decision comes after a US District Court Judge reversed a law signed by New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy banning guns in public places, with limited exceptions, stating that private property owners can issue their own firearm bans.
- A US District Court Ruling Overturned New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy’s New Law Banning Guns in Public Places
- The Casino Association of New Jersey Announced that the Nine Casinos on the Atlantic City Boardwalk Will Use their Right as Private Property Owners to Ban Guns on their Properties.
- The New Jersey Casinos’ Ban on Guns is Similar to Firearm Rules in Most Casinos Across the Country.
Atlantic City casino owners announced Monday that they will not allow firearms inside their casinos. The decision comes one week after US District Court Judge Renée Marie Bumb reversed New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy’s law banning guns in public places, with limited exceptions.
Mark Giannantonio, president of the Casino Association of New Jersey, said in a statement that the owners of the nine casinos on the Atlantic City Boardwalk will exercise their rights as private property owners to issue their own firearm ban.
“The safety and well-being of our guests and employees is a top priority for the Atlantic City casino industry,” Giannantonio said.
Governor Murphy signed a law banning guns in public places last December in response to a US Supreme Court ruling. That ban included casinos, bars, parks, beaches, and more.
After being challenged by pro-gun activists, the law was blocked by US District Court Judge Renée Marie Bumb in January. The judge stated that the law violates the Second Amendment to the US Constitution. According to Bumb, the law bans guns virtually everywhere in the state, which in turn denies residents the right of residents to bear arms.
However, as private properties, New Jersey casinos can refuse entry to patrons with firearms, as the court’s ruling does not apply to private establishments.
Gun proponents are not happy with the decision. Scott Bach, president of the Association of New Jersey Rifle and Pistol Clubs (ANJRPC), said he was “baffled” by the decision. Bach also claimed that this move prevents patrons from defending themselves. He alleged that it invites criminals and that “if the casinos don’t provide their own armed security, they’d better have good liability insurance.”
Bumb upheld part of the law banning guns on playgrounds, at youth sporting events, at zoos, in airports, on movie sets, and at medical facilities. In a ruling in early January, she issued an order barring the state from enforcing the law’s ban on firearms in vehicles, at public libraries and museums, and in entertainment venues.
The Atlantic City casino owners’ decision to ban firearms is in alignment with most casinos throughout the US—including gun-friendly Nevada—where open carry is permitted generally but guns are banned on the Las Vegas Strip.