Chicago Democratic Mayor Lori Lightfoot announced on Monday a 10 p.m. weekend curfew for minors as the city struggles to stop violent crime.
Monday’s announcement followed the shooting death of a teenager over the weekend. Lightfoot said she would sign an executive order moving the current 11 p.m. weekend curfew back by one hour.
"In Chicago, right now, the curfew for young people is 11 p.m. on the weekend. Today, I'm signing an Executive Order to move that curfew back to 10 p.m." – @chicagosmayor
— Ryan Johnson (@Ryan_Johnson) May 16, 2022
“No, we don’t want to arrest children. But if we have to, we will, if they’re breaking the law,” the mayor said during the morning news conference.
“My interest is not in rounding up young people and throwing them in the back of a wagon. It’s in enforcing community norms,” Lightfoot added.
WATCH LIVE: Mayor Lightfoot joins City and community leaders with an update on public safety. https://t.co/jAaRZn0Ipl
— Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot (@chicagosmayor) May 16, 2022
“What I want to do is make sure to reassure the public that our downtown is safe and we are taking these specific steps to make sure that our downtown remains safe,” the mayor said.
On Sunday, Lightfoot provided a lengthy statement following the shooting death of a teenager at Millennium Park.
“Tragically, a young person — a teenager — lost his life last night in Millennium Park. I suspect an overwhelming majority of the youth who were in the Park were there to have a good time and enjoy a summer evening. But the scene devolved into one of chaos and unnecessary violence,” Lightfoot wrote.
“We, as a City, can not allow any of our public spaces to become platforms for danger. Anyone coming into our public spaces should expect to enjoy them peacefully and must respect and exhibit basic community norms of decency,” she wrote.
Lightfoot also made headlines last month when the Chicago Police Department announced that 57% of the carjacking suspects in 2022 were juveniles. The mayor told young people at a town hall gathering devoted to public safety, “there are too many young people in this room who do not feel loved, too many, and we’ve got to change that around if we’re going to change around the trajectory of their lives.”
“The mayor said Chicago cannot ‘arrest ourselves’ out of public safety problems,” Fox 32 reported.
Crime has not been the only concern highlighted by Lightfoot in recent weeks. Last week, the Chicago mayor called for a “call to arms” over a leaked Supreme Court draft about abortion rights, tweeting, “To my friends in the LGBTQ+ community—the Supreme Court is coming for us next. This moment has to be a call to arms.”
“We will not surrender our rights without a fight—a fight to victory!” she added.