At the end of November, New York Mayor Bill de Blasio signed legislation that will repeal the 91-year-old “cabaret” law that nightclub owners, performers, and the AFM have tried to eliminate since its inception.
The antiquated law prohibited dancing in bars and restaurants that did not possess a cabaret license and were originally created to curb speakeasies during Prohibition.
The law had long faced challenges and complaints about its uneven and discriminatory enforcement. All aspects of the law were repealed except for two safety requirements. Establishments must install and maintain security cameras, and if they employ security guards, they must be licensed.
“We want to be a city where people can work hard, and enjoy the city’s nightlife without arcane bans on dancing,” says de Blasio.