As the COVID-19 crisis continues, Governor Ralph Northam issued Executive Order 55 today directing Virginians to “Stay at Home” except for conducting essential activities. Businesses, such as gun stores, not closed by the previous Executive Order 53 may remain open. They still “must limit all in-person shopping to no more than 10 patrons per establishment… with proper social distancing requirements.”
An NRA-supported Virginia law (Va. Code Ann. § 44-146.15(3)) also limits the governor’s emergency authority. That law provides that the Commonwealth’s emergency powers law does not
“Empower the Governor, any political subdivision, or any other governmental authority to in any way limit or prohibit the rights of the people to keep and bear arms as guaranteed by Article I, Section 13 of the Constitution of Virginia or the Second Amendment of the Constitution of the United States, including the otherwise lawful possession, carrying, transportation, sale, or transfer of firearms except to the extent necessary to ensure public safety in any place or facility designated or used by the Governor, any political subdivision of the Commonwealth, or any other governmental entity as an emergency shelter or for the purpose of sheltering persons”
Please stay tuned to www.nraila.org/coronavirus for further updates on our Second Amendment rights during COVID-19.