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Fayetteville is considering a curfew for teens, but is it really necessary?

There is a lot of discussion and speculation on social media about a curfew being implemented for teens in Fayetteville. Much of the speculation on the proposed “Youth Protection Ordinance” has been based on speculation, and not necessarily on the facts of the proposal.

Now y’all know we have to look out for our kids and keep them safe, but is this ordinance really the answer? Let’s dig into the details!

First, let’s break down what this ordinance is all about. The City of Fayetteville was set to discuss the proposal at their September 11 City Council meeting. The discussion was moved to a meeting on September 18 instead. You can CLICK HERE to see the proposed ordinance, or go to the Agenda Packet here for the September 11 meeting, and go to item 9.01.

The Youth Protection Ordinance proposes a curfew on minors under the age of 17 from 11 PM to 6 AM Sunday through Thursday, and midnight to 6 AM on Friday and Saturday. The only exceptions granted will be if the minor is accompanied by a parent or guardian, attending a school or religious function, or engaging in employment or other activities with adult supervision.

“The ‘Youth Protection Ordinance’ is intended to reinforce and promote the role of the parent in raising and guiding children, and promote the health, safety, and welfare of both juveniles and adults by creating an environment offering better protection and security for all concerned,” the proposed ordinance reads.

Now, some folks in the community are all for this ordinance, claiming that it will help keep our youth safe and out of harm’s way during late-night hours. Others, however, are concerned about how this ordinance will impact minority youth, particularly Black and Brown youth who are already disproportionately policed and criminalized. They argue that the curfew will give law enforcement even more power to harass and intimidate our communities.

Another concern is how necessary this curfew really is. Does Fayetteville have such a crime problem that we need to penalize young people who are simply out late at night? Some argue that there are better ways to address youth crime and safety, such as investing in community-led programs and resources for young people.

Furthermore, some community members are questioning the timing of this ordinance, given that we are still recovering from a pandemic. It is understandable that young people may stay out later than usual if they are seeking some sense of normalcy and social interaction after a year of isolation and disruption.

The Youth Protection Ordinance is a hot topic in our community right now. It raises important questions about how we can keep our youth safe while also respecting their autonomy and addressing underlying issues of crime and safety. As we await the city council’s decision on Monday, it is important for us to stay informed and engaged in this conversation. Let’s work together to create a Fayetteville that truly prioritizes the well-being and flourishing of all its residents, young and old.

Babydoll is an American Radio Personality born and raised in Eastern North Carolina. Greg Reid said it best in Wealth Made Easy: “A dream written down with a date becomes a goal. A goal broken down into steps becomes a plan. A plan backed by action makes your dreams come true.” She is a graduate of Carolina School of Broadcasting, in Charlotte North Carolina. Babydoll colloquially delivers compelling content and information. She connects with listeners not only over the airwaves, but also through social media platforms; as well as in their communities where it counts most.

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