Civil Rights Laws
New York Law
New York State Consolidated Laws
Article 2 - NY Civil Rights Law
S 2. Supreme sovereignty in the people. No authority can, on any
pretence whatsoever, be exercised over the citizens of this state, but
such as is or shall be derived from and granted by the people of this
S 3. Levying taxes and charges. No tax, duty, aid or imposition
whatsoever, except such as may be laid by a law of the United States,
can be taken or levied within this state, without the grant and assent
of the people of this state, by their representatives in senate and
assembly; and no citizen of this state can be by any means compelled to
contribute to any gift, loan, tax, or other like charge, not laid or
imposed by a law of the United States, or by the legislature of this
S 4. Right to keep and bear arms. A well regulated militia being
necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to
keep and bear arms cannot be infringed.
S 5. Military service by citizens. No citizen of this state can be
constrained to arm himself, or to go out of this state, or to find
soldiers or men of arms, either horsemen or footmen, without the grant
and assent of the people of this state, by their representatives in
senate and assembly, except in the cases specially provided for by the
constitution of the United States.
S 6. Exemption from military service. All such inhabitants of this
state of any religious denomination whatever, as from scruples of
conscience may be averse to bearing arms, are to be excused therefrom by
paying to the state an equivalent in money; and the legislature is
required to provide by law for the collection of such equivalent, to be
estimated according to the expense, in time and money, of an ordinary
S 7. Quartering soldiers. No soldier can in time of peace be quartered
in any house, without the consent of the owner; nor in time of war, but
in a manner to be prescribed by law.
S 8. Right of search and seizure. The right of the people to be secure
in their persons, houses, papers and effects, against unreasonable
searches and seizures, shall not be violated; and no warrants can issue
but upon probable cause supported by oath or affirmation, and
particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or
things to be seized.
S 9. Freedom of elections. All elections ought to be free; and no
person by force of arms, malice, menacing, or otherwise, should presume
to disturb or hinder any citizen of this state in the free exercise of
the right of suffrage.
S 10. Justice to be administered without favor and speedily. Neither
justice nor right should be sold to any person, nor denied, nor
deferred; and writs and process ought to be granted freely and without
delay, to all persons requiring the same, on payment of the fees
established by law.
S 11. Fines must be reasonable and imposed only for cause. No citizen
of this state ought to be fined or amerced without reasonable cause, and
such fine or amercement should always be proportioned to the nature of
S 12. Rights of persons accused of crime. In all criminal
prosecutions, the accused has a right to a speedy and public trial, by
an impartial jury, and is entitled to be informed of the nature and
cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against
him; and to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his
favor. An alien is not entitled to a jury, composed in part of aliens or
strangers, in an action or special proceeding civil or criminal.
S 13. Right to serve on juries. No citizen of the state possessing all
other qualifications which are or may be required or prescribed by law,
shall be disqualified to serve as a grand or petit juror in any court of
this state on account of race, creed, color, national origin or sex, and
any person charged with any duty in the selection or summoning of jurors
who shall exclude or fail to summon any citizen for any of the causes
aforesaid shall, on conviction thereof, be deemed guilty of a
misdemeanor and be fined not less than one hundred dollars nor more than
five hundred dollars or imprisoned not less than thirty days, nor more
than ninety days, or both such fine and imprisonment.
S 14. Jurors not to be questioned for verdicts. A juror shall not be
questioned, and is not subject to an action, or other liability civil or
criminal, for a verdict rendered by him, in an action in a court of
record, or not of record, or in a special proceeding before an officer,
except by indictment, for corrupt conduct, in a case prescribed by law.
S 15. Right of appeal not to be denied. Notwithstanding the provisions
of any general or special law to the contrary, a citizen shall not be
deprived of the right to appeal to the legislature, or to any public
officer, board, commission or other public body, for the redress of
grievances, on account of employment in the civil service of the state
or any of its civil divisions or cities.
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