QUEZON CITY, Aug 9 (PIA)--Quezon City Mayor Herbert M. Bautista on Tuesday night thanked the Supreme Court for affirming the legality of the city’s ordinance imposing curfew for minors.
“I haven’t read the SC order at this point [but the] QC government thanks the Supreme Court for their timely decision,” the mayor said.
“We can now implement the Discipline Hour Ordinance in Quezon City. The 142 barangays will now ensure that the provisions of the Ordinance are judiciously enforced with full consideration of human rights,” Mayor Bautista added.
The constitutionality of City Ordinance 2301-2014 — also known as Quezon City Discipline Hours for Minors — was questioned before the high court in July last year by a group called Samahan ng Progresibong Kabataan together with similar ordinances from Manila and Navotas. The Supreme Court granted the petitioner’s motion for the issuance of a temporary restraining order to bar the three cities from imposing the assailed ordinances.
But during the high court’s deliberation on Tuesday (8 August 2017), the justices ruled that only Quezon City’s ordinance is constitutional.
The SC, in a decision penned by Associate Justice Estela Perlas-Bernabe, ruled that City Ordinance 2301-2014 is constitutional and compliant with guidelines.
City Ordinance 2301-2014 imposes a curfew on minors from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m.
The ordinance stipulated that “the parent or guardian of the curfew violator will be penalized for allowing the minor to go out during this period, either ‘knowingly or by insufficient control’.
City Ordinance 2301-2014 was enacted in response to complaints about the rising number of minors roaming the streets, endangering motorists or getting involved in street crimes and illegal drugs.
The ordinance also penalizes the parents or guardians who allow a minor to remain in public places during the said hours and imposes penalties against them.
The measure, however, exempts minors who are in public places but are accompanied by their parents or guardians.
Also exempted are minors who are on their way to or from their school activity or organization wherein their attendance are required or otherwise indispensable.
Another exemption are young people who participate in activities sponsored or permitted by the city, barangay, school or other civic or religious group.
Minors on board a vehicle with their parents or guardians are also exempted from the discipline hours, including those who are engaged in authorized employment activity or are enrolled in evening classes.
A minor found violating the curfew for the first time will be referred to the nearest barangay hall or police station. The parent or guardian will be fined P2,000 or be required to render community service for 48 hours.
For the second violation, the parent or guardian will be penalized with a fine of P3,000 or 72-hour community service. Third and subsequent violations carry a fine of P5,000 or a prison term of six months.
Minors who habitually violate the curfew will be turned over to the Quezon City Social Services Development Department for counseling. (QC PAISO/RJB/SDL/PIA-NCR)