Judge grants permanent injunction against Mayor Kenney's order that banned guns from Philly rec spaces

Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney signed an executive order to abn guns at recreation facilities in the city last week.

A Philadelphia judge has granted a permanent injunction against Mayor Kenney's recently signed executive order that banned guns from the city's recreations spaces and facilities, according to court documents

The judge's order came Monday in response to a lawsuit from Gun Owners of America. Last week, Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney signed the order that would have banned guns and other deadly weapons from 159 public places across Philadelphia, including recreation center buildings, athletic courts, fields, playgrounds and pools.

"Pools, playgrounds and rec centers are no place for a gun," the mayor said. "It's unconscionable that anyone would bring deadly weapons to places where our city's children gather."

Kenney signed the order the day after a funeral for recreation worker Tiffany Fletcher. Fletcher, a 41-year-old mother of three, was fatally shot while sweeping a playground.

A 14-year-old was taken into custody in connection with that incident. 

Kenney says "senseless violence" claimed Fletcher's life, calling her funeral "one of the hardest" he ever attended.

"We are reviewing today's decision and are disappointed by the outcome, which as it stands prevents City employees from making the reasonable request that anyone with a firearm or deadly weapon leave a recreation facility. Since 2019, nearly 300 reported incidents of gun violence have occurred at City recreation facilities, in addition to dozens of other incidents of violence with a deadly weapon. The Mayor’s Executive Order was intended to prevent the senseless violence that is interfering with the safety of children, families and staff in what must be safe places," a spokesperson from the Mayor's Office said Monday.

Last month, two shootings erupted at recreational spaces across the city; with almost 100 rounds fired in West Philadelphia and a 23-year-old man paralyzed after a Kensington basketball court shooting.

Kenney said the order would give rec center employees "protection and some peace of mind" to contact police if they see someone carrying a firearm into any indoor or outdoor facility.