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NCJ Number: 159570 Find in a Library
Title: Juvenile Curfews and Gang Violence: Exiled on Main Street
Journal: Harvard Law Review  Volume:107  Dated:(1994)  Pages:1693-1710
Author(s): Anonymous
Date Published: 1994
Page Count: 18
Type: Legislation/Policy Analysis
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This analysis of the effectiveness of curfews as a method of addressing the problem of juvenile gangs considers the perspectives of civil libertarianism, communitarianism, and critical race theory and concludes that in theory and in practice, juvenile curfews offer only a marginal response to the problem of gang violence.
Abstract: Cities across the country have chosen juvenile curfews, which lie between traditional law enforcement and long-term efforts to address the underlying social decay that promotes the formation of gangs. Each curfew covers different age groups, restricts different hours, applies different sanctions, and permits different exceptions. Civil libertarianism, communitarianism, and critical race theory all offer insights into the purpose and problems of curfews. Communitarianism suggests that curfews can enhance public safety and facilitate community organization. In contrast, civil libertarianism emphasizes the threat posed by overly restrictive curfews and the need for vigorous judicial review. Critical race theory refines the warning of civil libertarianism by noting that curfews may be overtly or covertly motivated by racial bias and may contribute to destructive racial stereotyping. Even with judicial review, curfews remain a limited and inadequate response to the gang problem. If chosen, curfews should be part of a comprehensive response to the social and economic problems of urban areas and must not become an end in themselves. Footnotes
Main Term(s): Juvenile delinquency prevention; Juvenile/Youth Gangs
Index Term(s): Criminology; Curfew; Juvenile status offenses; Police juvenile relations; Rights of minors
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