Mayor and Kansas City Council unanimously enact sweeping curfew changes

August 18, 2011 - KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI
Council takes action to keep young people safe and hold parents accountable

Kansas City Mayor Sly James and the entire Kansas City Council joined together today to change the city’s curfew for minors. “My message to kids throughout this city is I care about every single one of you. Today this Council stepped up and clearly announced the days of inaction are over — enough is enough. Together we took action to put the responsibility for young children being out far too late squarely on their parents. There is much to do, but every solution begins at home. I am proud this Council stood together and with one voice declared that this is only a first step, but it is a necessary one. This will not stop the violence in our city. There is much more we will do. But, the large mobs have to stop and now,” said Mayor Sly James.

The Council enacted the ordinance by emergency action, declaring that the changes will take effect immediately upon passage. Beginning this weekend, the city’s new curfew is as follows:

For the summer months, from the Friday proceeding Memorial Day through the last Sunday in September the new curfew for minors under 16 is now 10:00 p.m. For minors ages 16 and 17 the new curfew is 11:00 p.m.

The Council also designated five areas that during the summer will have a special curfew. The Plaza, Westport, Downtown/Central Business District, 18th and Vine and Zona Rosa will have a 9:00 p.m. curfew for anyone under 18.

In October the curfew will revert for all minors under 18 to 11:00 p.m. on weekdays and midnight Friday and Saturday evenings.

Any minor violating the new curfew ordinance will be detained and their parents called to pick them up. Parents will be ticketed with a fine up to $500 for each offence.

Exceptions for the curfew include:

  1. When a minor is attending an event for which the City has specifically approved the presence of unaccompanied minors upon City property;
  2. When a minor is accompanied by his or her parent, guardian or other adult person having the lawful care and custody of the minor;
  3. When the minor is upon an emergency errand directed by his or her parent or guardian or other adult person having the lawful care and custody of such minor;
  4. When the minor is returning directly home from a school activity, school entertainment, school recreational activity or school dance;
  5. When the minor is returning directly home from lawful employment that makes it necessary to be in the places referenced in this section during the prescribed period of time;
  6. When the minor is attending or traveling directly to or from an activity involving the exercise of first amendment rights of free speech, freedom of assembly or free exercise of religion; and
  7. In interstate travel through the city.

“This Council stands united to reduce violent crime in Kansas City. There will be more actions to come in the weeks ahead. Reducing the crime in our neighborhoods and keeping our children safe will require a coordinated effort. It cannot just be the city, or the police department, or churches, or schools; rather it must be all of the above and more. We will keep doing what is right for the children of this city, and I truly believe we have turned a corner and will sustain the effort we have begun,” concluded Mayor James.

Contact: Danny Rotert: 816-513-6581 or cell: 816-547-6418