Curfew Legislation To Improve Community Safety

NT Government

The Lawler Labor Government is continuing its common sense plan to reduce crime and anti-social behaviour by unveiling new legislation that will enable curfews to be enacted more flexibly to protect communities in the Territory.

The Northern Territory Police Force will administer the new curfew legislation and any use of a curfew in the Territory will depend on operational assessments made by Police.

Formally declaring curfews will require steps to be taken by the Commissioner of Police and any extensions to a curfew will require the Police Minister to sign off on it.

The positive outcomes achieved through the Alice Springs Youth Curfew in March show that curfews can be an effective community safety tool.

The legislation used for the Youth Curfew in Alice Springs was the Emergency Management Act 2013. A specific set of circumstances, over a number of weeks, led to the Emergency Situation Declaration and the enactment of the Youth Curfew.

The Emergency Management Act 2013 does not suit a flexible approach to community safety but this new legislation will provide greater flexibility for Police to call and enforce a curfew to keep communities in the Territory safe.

The Police Legislation Amendment Bill 2024 – which will be introduced tomorrow – will allow a more flexible approach to enacting a curfew in cities and towns in the Territory.

Quotes attributable to Chief Minister Eva Lawler:

“We don’t anticipate curfews will be used frequently but they are an important option for Police to keep communities across the Territory safe – and that’s why we are bringing in this new legislation.

“We’ve seen the benefits that the Alice Springs Youth Curfew have delivered to residents and businesses and we want to have the option to use curfews as a circuit-breaker where they are needed.

“I appreciate these new curfew laws are breaking new ground so have ensured that that there is a special review process to enable the powers to be appropriately scrutinised.”

Quotes attributable to Minister for Police Brent Potter:

“Police do an incredible job to keep Territorians safe and this curfew legislation will give them another tool to lower crime and reduce anti-social behaviour.

The feedback from Police on the ground during the Alice Springs curfew was that having a Youth Curfew in place helped to reduce offending and we want to be able to replicate that success in other areas of the Territory.”

Northern Territory Government

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