Philadelphia’s Fashion District Imposes a Curfew For People Under 18 After 2 PM
Philadelphia’s Fashion District has implemented a curfew for individuals under 18 after 2 p.m. This measure is in response to increased “negative activity” at its mall, previously known as Gallery. Mall employees will still be permitted in after that time; they just must present proof of employment.
1. It’s a safety measure
Fashion District in Philadelphia has implemented an afternoon curfew for anyone under 18 after 2 p.m. This policy, intended to curb negative activity at its popular shopping mall formerly known as The Gallery, will remain in place daily until further notice in response to incidents where hundreds of teens congregated at once and caused chaos that drew police officers in to disperse them.
Previous to its new rules of conduct being put in place at the mall, its previous code of conduct required visitors under 18 to be accompanied by an adult over 23 from 5 pm Friday until 10 am Sunday from the mall security or law enforcement. Under these new guidelines, those arriving after curfew won’t be turned away from work but may need to provide proof of age but this won’t impact their ability to work during these hours.
At Tuesday night’s debate between candidates running for mayor were asked their support for a curfew. Some candidates offered strong backing while others seemed confused or wary about it; former City Councilmember Helen Gym in particular stated that any curfew should not criminalize young people and focus more resources and activities for youth rather than criminalizing them.
Businessman William Porter and Councilman Curtis Jones both echoed that sentiment, suggesting they’d prefer spending money spent on policing on community outreach programs for youth instead. Councilwoman Cherelle Parker who heads up the Labor and Civil Service Committee also asserted that curfew would no longer be necessary if more resources were put towards community policing efforts.
Private security employees hired by the mall will enforce the new code of conduct at Fashion District Mall, and it will be up to them when approaching visitors and asking for proof of age documentation from those appearing to be under 18 (this doesn’t apply if people visit for work purposes).
2. It’s a way to deter negative activity
Due to an increase in negative activity, Philadelphia Fashion District recently implemented a curfew on visitors under 18 starting Monday after 2 pm. Anyone under the age of 18 must be supervised by an adult aged 23+ at this popular shopping center.
This new rule is meant to deter youth gatherings that could result in vandalism, fighting, or other disruptive activity that disrupts businesses on Market Street and make the mall safer and more inviting for shoppers.
Curfews have also been implemented at malls to ensure employees can work safely. Anyone under 18 may be asked by security or law enforcement officials for ID that demonstrates where they work; this won’t stop them working after curfew has passed.
3. It’s a way to prevent crimes
Philadelphia’s Fashion District Mall has implemented a curfew to reduce negative activity, such as gatherings that resulted in property damage or disruptions by teenagers. Starting Monday afternoon, this new policy prohibits anyone under 18 from entering after 2 p.m. without being accompanied by an adult who is 23 or over; employees working there may also be asked for proof of age when approached by security or law enforcement, though this won’t hinder their ability to work during prohibited hours.
This policy was implemented as a reaction to an increase in youth-related incidents around the Fashion District and city, including property damage and public disturbances, caused by youth. Furthermore, it aims to stop what has become known as “curfew-to-prison pipeline,” in which young people who violate curfews are arrested and have difficulty exiting criminal justice system once charged with breaking curfews.
KYW Newsradio’s Tim Jimenez reports that starting Monday, the mall implemented a strict daily curfew that requires all visitors aged 2 p.m. or later to be accompanied by an adult over the age of 23. This policy complements its previous code of conduct that required minors be accompanied by adults after 5 pm Fridays through Sundays.
One reason many city council candidates were wary of the Fashion District curfew was its potential impact on programs designed to keep kids and teenagers safe, such as youth engagement centers. According to them, it would not be right to punish young people simply for congregating, hanging out downtown, or being visible there.
Curfews are not uncommon in other cities; when children and teenagers break them, non-law enforcement staff will approach them if seen violating them and attempt to convince them to go home, but if that fails they’re brought to a youth engagement center for supervised activities.
Fashion District residents have had mixed responses to its new curfew, yet many appear to view it as an effective measure to prevent negative incidents and keep residents safer during summer violence spikes in Philadelphia and throughout the U.S. It’s an encouraging step, particularly as summer violence often escalates across Philadelphia and other parts of the U.S. It should also serve as part of an overall plan that makes police more visible and engages more closely with community groups.
4. It’s a way to protect shoppers
Philadelphia Fashion District Mall introduced a new curfew on Monday afternoon, prohibiting anyone under 18 from entering after 2pm unless accompanied by an adult 23 years or older. This change came in response to several disturbances this month where hundreds of teens congregated at the area and caused property damage as well as fighting among themselves.
Candidates for mayor were quizzed during a debate Tuesday night regarding the new curfew policy. Some supported it while others seemed confused or skeptical of its intent. District 3 Councilmember Eric Olson and District 5 candidate Matt Blegay voiced support, explaining it is necessary to deter negative activity and protect shoppers.
District 7 Council candidate Gary Fallows was the sole member to oppose it, citing it as an infringement on civil rights and advocating that private businesses decide who can enter their buildings themselves. Furthermore, he suggested that other issues, like mental health support and affordable housing be addressed to prevent future behavior issues from occurring.
Fashion District Philadelphia announced it will work closely with law enforcement in order to enforce its new curfew, with anyone appearing underage being asked for identification by security or police. Furthermore, this rule does not impact employees of the mall who are under 18 and Aatron Baskerville reported on NBC10 that youth can still utilize Jefferson train station which connects directly to the mall.
Garden State Plaza recently implemented a similar curfew on children under 18, citing its need to combat “flash mobs” of children that gather there after school and on weekends. Some high-end restaurants also enacted bans against underage diners citing loud noise or crying as reasons to exclude children from dining rooms; some Philadelphia teenagers found the curfew unfair. Sarah Creelman from Columbus visits Easton several times every month without it altering her shopping plans at all.