MIAMI — A federal judge struck down a Florida law that restricted doctors from talking about gun ownership with their patients.
The Miami Herald reports U.S. District Judge Marcia Cooke on Friday ruled in favor of physicians who argued the law violated their free speech rights. Cooke had issued a preliminary order blocking the law in September.
In a 25-page ruling Cooke wrote evidence shows physicians had started “self-censoring” because of the legislation’s “chilling” effect.
Florida’s Republican-controlled Legislature adopted the Firearm Owners’ Privacy Act in 2011 after an Ocala couple complained that a doctor had asked them about guns. The couple says they refused to answer and the physician refused to see them again.
Rep. Jason Brodeur, a Republican from Sanford who sponsored the bill, says an appeal is likely.Judge strikes down Florida law barring doctors from discussing gun safety with patients