ACLU Demand to Protect Parents’ and Childrens’ Rights Results in Amended Maui Curfew for Minors
August 26, 2008
Wailuku, Maui - The American Civil Liberties Union of Hawaii (“ACLU”) announced a victory for parental and youth rights with the passage of an amended juvenile curfew ordinance in Maui County.
“Under the old ordinance, a minor wanting to attend midnight mass could have been arrested,” explained Laurie Temple, ACLU Staff Attorney. The old ordinance, which prohibited youth up to age 18 from being out at night (with very few exceptions), severely restricted both parental rights to raise their children and youth rights to participate in late-night school events, religious activities, jobs, and other legitimate night-time activities.
The ACLU opposes juvenile curfews because they violate a number of rights held by children as well as the rights of parents to control and direct their children’s upbringing free from unwarranted government intrusion.
“The Constitution simply does not allow the government unfettered discretion to dictate when and whether people may leave their homes,” explained Temple. “Furthermore, parents have the right and responsibility to make decisions about their children without the government arbitrarily telling them what to do.”
After receiving complaints, the ACLU warned the Maui County Council (“Council”) that its juvenile curfew ordinance violated both the state and federal constitutions and must be repealed or amended.
The amended ordinance, signed into law by Maui County Mayor Tavares on July 28, 2008, allows a minor to be out past the County-imposed curfew time (for youths under 13, curfew is from 8 p.m. to 4 a.m.; for youths 13-16, from 10 p.m. to 4 a.m.; for youths 16-18, from midnight to 4 a.m.) if the minor:
If parents or youths have questions about Maui’s curfew ordinance, or about ordinances on other islands, they can contact the ACLU of Hawaii at firstname.lastname@example.org or (808) 522-5900.
Ph.: (808)522-5900 Fax: (808)522-5909 Email: email@example.com
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