TRENTON, N.J. – In the wake of the church shooting in Texas and recent anti-Semitic attacks in New Jersey and New York, Assemblyman Ron Dancer urged the legislature to consider his bill (A1695) allowing places of worship to select one person to carry a handgun during religious services for the purpose of security.
“The recent attacks against people for their religious beliefs and at their place of worship are grim reminders that no one is safe from evil and we need to do what we can to protect ourselves,” said Dancer (R-Ocean). “The armed hero at the West Freeway Church of Christ in Texas shot a killer in the sanctuary and prevented countless more casualties. We know we are not immune to such shootings here, which is why I think we should allow churches, mosques, or synagogues to have an armed security person on site to protect the defenseless attendees.”
The person selected may be required to participate in a firearms training course with certified instructors, and can serve as a volunteer or be paid for their services. The bill does not prohibit places of worship from hiring an armed security officer or allowing a law enforcement officer or other person entitled to carry a firearm at all times in this state from serving as the person selected for the security program.