Curfew for youths can work

WANGSA Maju Wanita Umno division chief Datuk Noor Aieni Mohd Ali has suggested that the government impose a 10pm-5am curfew on youths aged 21 and below.
They should not be out of the house without the supervision of their parents.

The suggestion is a good idea although the age limit could be lowered to 18 or the time adjusted to midnight.

The curfew will help to prevent tragedies like that in Johor Baru where eight teenaged cyclists were killed in an accident at 3am.

Noor Aieni said the curfew was one way to curb drug abuse and vice among youths.

The issue here is that many people have rejected the idea because it came from an Umno representative.

I don't see any issue on implementing a curfew for youth. This has been done in many European countries.

Iceland has seen major changes among its youths since a law was passed prohibiting children aged between 13 and 16 being outside after 10pm in winter and midnight in summer. As a result of this curfew, the percentage of youths who used cannabis has decreased from 17% in 1998 to 7% in 2016 and those smoking cigarettes fell from 23% in 1998 to 3% in 2016.

In Germany, the federal government has barred teenagers under 16 from night clubs after midnight; youths under 18 need authorisation from their parents to attend concerts, and those under 18 can only stay in the cinema until midnight.

What about Southeast Asia? Well, Thailand implemented a curfew on Valentine's Day when parents were told to keep their children aged under 18 at home after 10pm on Feb 14.

This was done to prevent youths from acting inappropriately by taking drugs or engaging in vice on that day.

The suggestion of a curfew should be considered as it could shield teenagers from social ills and other forms of danger.

Aaron Denison
Kuala Lumpur