The Fulton County Commission has approved a new youth curfew for the unincorporated parts of the county in response to escalating violence.

The curfew applies to those 16 and younger with the new hours of 11 p.m. to 6 a.m. every night of the week.  

Commissioner Khadijah Abdur-Rahman, who proposed changing the curfew hours, said even though it was only enforceable in the unincorporated area, she hoped it would be an example for the cities in Fulton County.

“We’re encouraging municipalities to vote one end of the county to the other to follow suit and put something in place because we don’t need another child killed, we don’t need another carjacking. We don’t need another 13, 14 and 15-year-old kicking in somebody’s doors to rob,” she said.

While the curfew won’t stop the violence and crime, Abdur-Rhaman said she believes it would be a tool for law enforcement and social workers to use to make sure there is parental responsibility and to show children they were trying to save lives.

In response to the curfew resolution, Atlanta City Councilmember Keisha Waites, who has been pushing for a similar ordinance in the city, said she is encouraged.

“I have both respect and gratitude for Commissioner Khadijah Abdur-Rahman and the Fulton County Board of Commissioners for passing a curfew resolution,” she said. “I want to thank Commissioner Khadijah for encouraging the municipalities of Fulton county to follow suit.”

Waites added that she is open to a 10 p.m curfew in Atlanta, and looks forward to sitting down with Mayor Andre Dickens and the council to collaborate on the remaining provisions to get this youth safety measure passed.

“Commissioner Khadijah also issued a charge encouraging Fulton County municipalities to follow suit. We must immediately implement this youth curfew as a tool in the toolbox of safety solutions,” Waites said. “I will be inviting the Mayor and council members to co-host community listening sessions with me over the following months so we may hear from parents, youth, faith, and business leaders across the city.”

Waites also explained, “while the existing and current proposed Resolution does offer exceptions for students who are working or participating in school activities, at this point, we cannot continue to kick the can on this. We are in a crisis.”

Collin KelleyEditor

Collin Kelley has been the editor of Atlanta Intown for two decades and has been a journalist and freelance writer for 35 years. He’s also an award-winning poet and novelist.

Bob Pepalis

Bob Pepalis covers Sandy Springs for Rough Draft Atlanta and Reporter Newspapers.