Groups plan to protest proposed Baltimore youth curfew

BALTIMORE - Community, student and youth groups will be holding a protest beginning at 4 p.m. Monday outside of City Hall to protest the proposed Baltimore City youth curfew, which the City Council is expected to vote on today.

Groups are adamant that a curfew will increase racial profiling and the criminalization of youth.   They are also concerned that poor and mostly African American communities will be targeted over more wealthy neighborhoods.

Their major message is that the city should be providing youth services, recreation centers and better paying jobs with shorter hours to enable parents to better cope with parenting rather than punitive measures like a curfew. 

Baltimore's existing curfew requires youths under 17 to be inside by 11 p.m. weeknights and midnight on weekends.

The new law would require children under 14 to be home by 9 p.m. Youths between 14 and 16 would have to be indoors by 10 p.m. on weeknights and 11 p.m. on weekends.

Parents of children found outside after curfew will be required to attend counseling or pay a $500 fine.

The bill also would require police officers to request identification from young people caught on the street past curfew.

*The Associated Press contributed to this story.

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