KUNM

Lights Out For Curfew Bill

Feb 17, 2016

A bill to toughen curfew rules for kids in New Mexico failed in the legislature Tuesday night. 

House Bill 29 would have let local governments set their own curfews for minors. It made it through the House of Representatives, but got derailed by the Senate Judiciary Committee this week when it failed on a 6-4 vote.

Supporters of the curfew measure had said it would enhance public safety. But critics like Steve Allen of the New Mexico ACLU say the Senate did the right thing by voting down the bill.

"It’s often children of color who are more frequently targeted," Allen said. "We just don’t believe it’s a good use of law enforcement resources for police to interact with kids who are simply out past their bedtime."

Youth advocates and social workers also celebrated Tuesdays vote—they said strict curfews would have disproportionately targeted kids from lower-income families who have to work at night.