Dallas NAACP Youth Council calls for removal of juvenile curfew

Some Dallas teens spent their Sunday calling for the removal of the Dallas juvenile curfew ordinance.

The Dallas NAACP Youth Council called a news conference to say that the curfew does not protect youth, and instead targets minorities.

It was mostly high school students at the Thurgood Marshall Recreation Center to hear the NAACP Dallas Youth Council advocate for the removal of the Dallas juvenile curfew.

The curfew prohibits teens and children 16 and under from being outside without an adult between the hours of 11 p.m. and 6 a.m. Sunday through Thursday, and between midnight and 6 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday.

The curfew ordinance has been in effect in Dallas since 1991.

The council argues that the intentions are good — to keep teens and kids safe — but the reality is that it's not protecting youth or reducing crime in Dallas.

They cited Dallas PD statistics to show that it also targets minorities.

"It is an unfortunate pathway for innocent youth to enter the criminal system sooner, not encourage high school completion, college acceptance, or joining the workforce," said Corinne Dorsey, Dallas NAACP Youth Council president.

Dallas Police Association President Mike Mata says the ordinance is a means to curb criminal activity and ensure safety.

The police department has put out a statement stating that DPD is concerned about the disproportionate minority contact that occurs because of the ordinance, and that the department will look for other programs to prevent young people from being out late, rather than an ordinance that could result in a citation and court date.

The city of Dallas has already hosted two public hearings on the curfew ordinance, and the city council is expected to vote on it next month.