Curfews Doesn’t Keep Teens Out Of Trouble

Last Updated: 20 Jun 2022
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Youth curfews are popular. In poll after poll, Americans support laws that restrict teenagers' activities during certain hours of the day and night. Youth curfews are also logical. If youngsters are getting into trouble, it makes sense to get them off the streets. There's only one problem with youth curfews: They don't work. And we shouldn't kid ourselves that they do. Yet that's what we're doing in Philadelphia, where Mayor Nutter recently extended a 9 p. m. curfew on Friday and Saturday nights for all unaccompanied minors in Center City and University City.

The measure came on the heels of this summer's violent flash-mob episodes, which seem to have quieted down since then. But the city already had a youth curfew in place, long before the flash-mob mayhem began. On weekdays, it's 9 p. m. for children under 13 and 10:30 p. m. for children 13 to 17; on the weekends, everyone has to be home by midnight. And that hasn't done anything to stem the tide of youth violence in Philadelphia. Insofar as the downtown curfew has "worked," it probably just displaced crime from one part of the city - and one time of the day - to another.

That's what happened in Detroit, after it adopted a youth curfew in 1976. Juvenile crime dropped 6 percent during the curfew hours, but it increased 13 percent in the midafternoon. Nationwide, more than 80 percent of juvenile offenses take place between 9 a. m. and 10 p. m. - outside most curfews. Nor do we have any solid evidence that youth curfews lower the overall rate of juvenile crime. In a close study of Monrovia, Calif. , in the 1990s, for example, sociologist Michael Males found that juvenile arrests for non-curfew crimes increased 53 percent during the school months when the town's curfew was enforced.

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In July and August, when the curfew was not enforced, non-curfew youth crime went down 12 percent. So why are we so wedded to youth curfews? The answer has less to with youth than with adults. Whenever we get worried that the youth are out of control, we enact a curfew. And that makes us feel better, even if it doesn't make crime go down. Youth curfews date to late 19th century, when America's cities swelled with millions of unsupervised teens. Like laws mandating school attendance and banning child labor, the argument went, curfews would improve individual lives even as they protected the social order.

President Benjamin Harrison called curfews "the most important municipal regulation for the protection of children in American homes from the vices of the street. " By 1900, 3,000 municipalities had curfews in place. The next set of curfews came during Prohibition in the 1920s, when speakeasies and gang violence sparked new anxieties about American youth. Although juvenile crime dropped during the decade, it made for good press - and, in several cities, for new curfews. "The street corners and vacant lots of the city are the kindergartens of a school of crime," opined an editorial writer in Chicago, endorsing the city's 1921 curfew.

"The primary and intermediate classes meet in vicious poolrooms. Cabarets and tough saloons are offering advanced lessons, and post-graduate instruction is available in the jails and penitentiaries. " Then came the juvenile-delinquency scare of the 1950s, which sparked - surprise! - another wave of youth curfews. By 1957, half of American cities with populations of more than 100,000 had juvenile-curfew laws. But the greatest spike in curfews came in the early 1990s, amid a sharp rise in youth crime.

Between 1988 and 1992, criminal offenses by juveniles rose 26 percent; even worse, youth crimes against persons - murder, rape, and assault - skyrocketed 56 percent. So curfews boomed, too. From 1990 to 1995, 53 of America's 200 largest cities enacted new curfew ordinances. The effort got a boost from President Bill Clinton, who signed a 1996 measure allotting $75 million to help local governments enact curfews and other anti-crime ordinances. "They help keep our children out of harm's way," Clinton declared. In fact, they don't.

To his credit, Mayor Nutter has instituted other measures to fight juvenile crime, including expanding the hours that recreation centers stay open. And he has skillfully used his bully pulpit, taking to the streets and airwaves to encourage parents to keep a closer watch on their children. More power to him, but not to the curfews. They might be good politics, but they're bad policy. Let's hope the mayor can tell the difference. It dosent matter what time off day it is, a teen will still be mischieve and do crimes.

Don't you think that a parent should be more at fault for the teens crimes? Or is a curfew reall going to stop anybody. Curfew or No Curfew , Kids Are Going To Do What They Want To Do. Telling Them What TIme They Have To Be In The House Is Only Going To Make Them Want To Stay Out Later. The whole curfew thing could go both ways because you have some kids that don't care what time it is, they will come in when ever they want. Or what about the kids who parents give then a one o clock curfew. If they're parents are okay with it then what more can you about it. I don't think curfews keep people out of trouble.

People will do what they wand and when they want to. Curfews don't stop people. Bad things can happen during the day even. So curfews don't effect anybody. I think that curfew somewhat helps the teens stay out of trouble but teens are always out on the streets doing whatever they want. Any time of the day a teen can cause harm but curfews just tries to decrease the harms teenagers can do at night. Either way they'll still do harm. A teen will be a teen. It doesn't matter what time of day it is. A curfew may make things worse. "Rules are made to be broken."

Inforcing curfew may cause a riot like Projext X and be a TERRIBLE outcome. I think that it doesnt matter what time it is or if you have a Curfew or not , If I have to be in at a certain time, I most likely wont come in at that time just because I may not want to . Teens are going to do what they want to do and giving them a curfew isnt going to change anything , It depends on the way the Parent approaches the situation . Purpose A curfew is designed to ensure your teen is at home safely for the evening. This includes helping prevent teen delinquency and keeping teens out of trouble.

Curfews are also meant to cut down on dangerous activities such as drinking and driving. Many parents also enforce a curfew to help their teen get enough sleep. Ultimately, curfews can also give your teen independence while still setting reasonableAppropriate Curfews Sit down and discuss an appropriate curfew with your teen. If she has a role in setting her curfew, she is more likely to stick to it. Younger teens from 12 to 13 years old should be home between 7 and 8 p. m. on school nights, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics.

A curfew of 8 or 9 p. appropriate for teens between the ages of 14 and 16. Teens who can drive should be home between 10 and 11 p. m. on school nights. On weekends, it's appropriate to allow your teen to stay out 2 hours later than their weekday curfew, the AAP suggests. boundaries. Curfew and bedtime are two of the more negotiable household rules. During adolescence, when boys and girls are getting their first taste of independence, they probably spend the equivalent of a law-school education making their case to Mom and Dad for just a little extra time to stay out or to stay up.

What is not negotiable are the consequences for disobeying curfew, except in the event of unforeseen circumstances. So that the punishment conforms to the crime, deduct time from future curfews, depending on the severity of the infraction. If your youngster straggles in an hour late, perhaps the next time he goes out with his friends, he has to come home an hour earlier than usual. Two hours past curfew buys a teenager a Friday or Saturday night confined to home. Long-term punishments, such as grounding the offender for one month, amount to overkill and will very likely do more harm than good.

Q: When setting a curfew, how do I know what’s reasonable and what’s not? All of my son’s friends have to be home at different times, so it’s hard to base my decision on what other parents do. A: You can start by consulting the following table, which gives parents general guidelines appropriate for each stage of adolescent development. Let’s use as an example a fourteen-year-old boy. If he has school or other early morning commitments the next day, he really should be home no later than nine o’clock at night; if it’s a vacation day coming up, between 10 P.

M. and 11 P. M. is reasonable. That’s your starting point. Now factor in the following: 1. How mature and responsible is he overall? If you feel confident that he knows how to watch out for his own safety and you trust he is where he tells you he will be, perhaps you extend the curfew. Some kids may not need a curfew beyond a community or state law regulating when adolescents must be off the road. 2. Does he usually comply with curfew? Again, his past behavior will influence how lenient or strict you are. 3. What activity is he engaged in?

If he is shooting hoops in the park, he should be home by sundown, but if he’s studying with a friend, he can stay out later. 4. If he’s attending a baseball game, concert, school function or other event, what time does it let out and how long will it take him to get home? This will help determine whether or not you allow him some extra time to perhaps get a bite to eat before heading home. 5. How much sleep does he usually need? The average adolescent requires about nine hours of shut-eye a night, some more, some less.

If your youn Do Curfew Keep Teens Out of Trouble" StudyMode. com. 02 2013. 2013. 02 2013 . gster is drowsy in the morning, you’ll want to move up his bedtime, and with it, his curfew. 6. Even with a curfew teens will do what they want to do. If that means sneaking out, lying or skipping school or etc. sneaking out gives a teen a thrill and like they are invincible. That just makes them more likely to do much more dangerous stuff. Also, having a curfew just adds stress on a teen, because they will freak out about running late and traffic causing them to be late.

If anyone says that kids will be too scared to sneak out, well wouldn't they be to break an actual law? Does curfew really keep teens out of trouble? Curfews give teens the chance to change and it works because they have less time out to cause the trouble and get Pregnant do vandalism, go stealing take drugs, smoke Cigarettes, and have under age sex get involved with the police and Intimidating Behavior. That’s the reason many people believe curfews are a good idea however giving your child a curfew is not going to stop them from doing all this stuff.

They may not do it during the night or during their curfew but they may be doing it at day time or even skip school and go get in trouble. Having a curfew does not decrease crimes. Numerous articles by credible sources such as the (National Center for Policy Analysis, the Center on Juvenile and Criminal Justice, and the US Department of Justice) all unanimously agree that curfew, in fact, does NOT lower young crime rates of any kind. Also, I found that the amount of arrests in young for breaking curfew greatly outnumbers the amount of arrests for any other crime in young.

All of this goes to show that curfews in fact have no effect, and that teaching young teens to have morals and know what is right and what is wrong is greatly more effective than curfews. I've had my share of sneaking out, and staying out WAY past the time my parents set before me. It's only because if you say I can't do something, I want to prove everyone wrong and say that I can do that, and you can't do anything to stop me. Curfew is just a fence that can be climbed... [continues]

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Curfews Doesn’t Keep Teens Out Of Trouble. (2016, Aug 13). Retrieved from

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