Proposal for gun shop-free zones nixed

Lancaster

UPDATE: Manheim Township commissioners voted to not move forward with the request made by Lancaster Country Day — essentially killing it — citing potential conflicts with state and federal law, including the Constitution.

LANCASTER, Pa. (WHTM) — Lancaster Country Day School Administrators firmly believe they are trying to protect anyone who walks through their doors.

“Without students feeling safe, they won’t be at their best during the school day and neither will teachers and staff,” assistant head Todd Trout said.

The school submitted a proposal to Manheim Township commissioners in September that would create a 1,000-feet buffer zone around schools. Gun shops and even images of guns would be prohibited inside the zones.

Commissioners are expected to vote on the proposal Monday night.

Trout said they submitted the proposal because of concerns with the Gun Gallery, a firearm retailer that opened near the school in 2018.

“There was a heightened concern about safety and security,” Trout said. “There have been numerous mass shootings through the country. There was one just before [Gun Gallery] opened up. You could tell people were concerned and asking, ‘Is that what we want near our school?'”

Though the Gun Gallery has closed since then, critics still raise concerns regarding free speech and the signage restrictions.

Gun-rights group Firearms Owners Against Crime has sent letters and threatened to sue Manheim Township if the proposal is passed.

“We’re not opposed to Second Amendment rights,” Trout said. “We’re not anti-guns in any way. We’re pro-education and we’re trying to think about safety.”

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