Gov. DeSantis to sign bill declaring all religious services 'essential' during emergencies

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Republican Governor Ron DeSantis is set to sign a bill which declares all religious services “essential” in the state of Florida.

Senate Bill 254, which passed through the state senate in January, states that an emergency declaration “may not directly or indirectly prohibit a religious institution from conducting regular religious services or activities.”

However, the government will be able to stop religious services if all businesses are ordered to be closed and only if an emergency declaration applies “to all entities in the affected jurisdiction,” the bill reads.

SB 254 was introduced through the state legislature after religious institutions were deemed “non-essential” throughout the United States during the coronavirus pandemic.

The sponsor of the bill, Republican state Senator Jason Brodeur, said that the bill will prevent future bans on places of worship under a state of emergency.

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