Friday, January 10, 2014
For Immediate Release
Gainesville FL - Florida Carry, Inc. has today filed a lawsuit against the University Florida (UF), seeking a permanent injunction to protect the rights of students, faculty, and the public from the university’s illegal and unconstitutional regulations prohibiting firearms and weapons on all university property. Since 1987 the Florida Legislature has preempted firearms law and issued state-wide licenses to carry for self-defense. In December Florida Carry won a similar case against the University of North Florida (UNF). In Florida Carry v. UNF the First District Court of Appeal ruled that “The legislature’s primacy in firearms regulation derives directly from the Florida Constitution… Indeed, the legislature has reserved for itself the whole field of firearms regulation in section 790.33(1)…” No public college or university has any authority to prevent students and the public from having a functional firearm in places that are constitutionally protected or permitted under state law.
The University of Florida has failed to comply with the court’s ruling by doing nothing more than adding an “Intent” footnote to one of its illegal policies. Florida Carry Executive Director Sean Caranna reached out to UF President Bernie Machen in an attempt to avert the need for legal action. Mr. Caranna’s call was returned by the university’s General Counsel who refused to take our concerns about UF’s illegal policies and regulations seriously and was dismissive of our plea that they work with us to craft a legal set of regulations. Florida Carry was left with no choice but to file this case.
Any public college or university which attempts to restrict the statutory and fundamental right to keep and bear arms in Florida is subject to enforcement actions by organizations such as Florida Carry. In addition to enforcing the clearly established right of students to lawfully store firearms in their personal vehicles on campus, Florida Carry seeks to protect the right to possess firearms and other defensive weapons in the home. In the landmark 2008 Heller case the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that bans on the possession of functional arms in the home are unconstitutional. Nationwide, millions of adult university faculty, students, and their families live in university owned housing. The fact that state housing facilities run by Florida Universities continue to deprive law abiding adults of their fundamental right to keep and bear arms in their homes, years after the clear decisions of the U.S. Supreme Court that such bans are unconstitutional, is unconscionable.
Read the Complaint Here