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1/14/2011 4:50:21 PM
Home School Legal Defense Association
Illinois--Act Now to Stop Proposed Daytime Curfew

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From the HSLDA E-lert Service...
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Illinois--Act Now to Stop Proposed Daytime Curfew

Dear HSLDA Members and Friends in Carlinville:

Your help is needed immediately to defeat a proposed Carlinville
daytime curfew ordinance that would rob parents of the freedom to
determine when their children can be in public, and rob young people
of their right to be in public.

Right now, parents alone have the authority to determine when and
where their children can be in public during daytime hours. But the
town council on Monday will vote on an ordinance which would, with few
exceptions, make it a crime for a person under age 17 to be in public.

This attempt to deprive parents of their right to govern their
children, and to deprive young people of the right to move about
freely, is an attack on every family's freedom.

ACTION REQUESTED IF YOU LIVE IN CARLINVILLE

1. Attend the council meeting Monday at 7 p.m. and communicate your
opposition to the proposed ordinance. We have been advised that the
deadline for "signing up" for a slot to speak at the council meeting
ended at noon on Friday. Even if you are not allowed to speak, your
presence will send a powerful message. If someone asks "will all
those who oppose the ordinance stand up?" hopefully the entire room
will stand up, and the council will get the message. The address is
550 North Broad, Carlinville.

2. Visit or call all of the aldermen. Contact information is below.
Respectfully ask them to vote "no" on this anti-freedom ordinance.
Additional reasons to oppose the ordinance are listed below.

3. Consider other ways to quickly bring this into public view so the
public can be informed that their rights are threatened.

Contact Information for the Carlinville Aldermen:

John Koster - 1st Ward
530 N. Charles
Carlinville, IL 62626
(217) 854-3532

JR Levora - 1st Ward
421 Hillcrest
Carlinville, IL 62626

Tim Coonrod - 2nd Ward
703 Mayo St
Carlinville, IL 62626
(217) 854-8879

James Suter - 2nd Ward
218 Hoehn St.
Carlinville, IL 62626

Wesley Loveless - 3rd Ward
418 S. Plum St.
Carlinville, IL 62626
(217) 854-6021

Dave Steiner - 3rd Ward
46 White Tail Dr.
Carlinville, IL 62626
(217) 854-8205

Sonny Albertine - 4th Ward
1050 W. Main St.
Carlinville, IL 62626
(217) 854-3371

Brian Mitchell - 4th Ward
625 N. Oak St.
Carlinville, IL 62626
(217) 854-3965

Randy Ober - 5th Ward
635 N. Charles St.
Carlinville, IL 62626
(217) 854-8687

Joe Direso - 5th Ward
701 N. Charles St.
Carlinville, IL 62626
(217) 854-3971

BACKGROUND:

1. Daytime curfews do not deter juvenile crime, as proponents usually
claim.

A recent California study compared the juvenile crime rates of
counties that enforced curfew ordinances and counties that did not.
The crime rates were the same. The curfews had no effect on juvenile
crime.

2. Daytime curfews allow searches without probable cause.

The Fourth Amendment forbids any investigation of a citizen without a
"probable cause." The proposed ordinance allows policemen to stop and
interrogate a person merely because he looks young enough to be
violating the curfew. It is an invitation to harass homeschool
families.

3. Daytime curfews assume a person is guilty until proven innocent.

In several incidents where homeschool students were stopped by police,
they had done nothing to arouse suspicion. There was no evidence they
had committed a crime or intended to. Nonetheless, the police
interrogated them and treated them like criminals until they had
proved their innocence.

4. Exceptions

The exceptions are: (a) being accompanied by a parent; (b) public
school not in session; (c) excused by school for lunch; (d) excused by
public school superintendent for work; (e) court attendance; (f)
doctor visits. Unfortunately, the only way for a policeman to
determine if an exception applies in a particular situation is to stop
and interrogate the frightened young person. By then the damage has
already been done. The child may be afraid to go outdoors again. The
right to homeschool includes the right to be free from
fear--especially for young people, who are most vulnerable to feelings
of fear.

5. Unconstitutionality

The ordinance violates constitutional principles on its face. It
irrationally forces children who do not attend public school to govern
their entire lives according to a public school schedule. This chills
the constitutional right of parents to choose any form of education
other than public school.

6. Litigation Pending

HSLDA is currently pursuing litigation against a California town that
adopted a daytime curfew ordinance. Not every curfew situation is
appropriate for litigation, but HSLDA is prepared to give careful
attention to the Carlinville situation if the ordinance passes.

7. Disproportionate impact

Daytime curfews have a disproportionate impact on homeschool families
because we allow
our children free time while public schools are in session.
Homeschoolers have been harassed and made fearful by policemen who
treat them like suspected criminals for doing nothing more than being
in public. They have interrogated them and treated them like criminals
until they proved their innocence.

8. Truancy

If the motivation behind this proposal is to reduce truancy, the
solution is to either change public schools to make them a place young
people actually want to be, or enforce the existing laws. Passing a
new law without changing enforcement will accomplish nothing. But if
enforcement of existing law is changed, no new law would be needed in
the first place! New laws can't fix bad enforcement.

Thank you for standing with us for freedom!

Sincerely,

Scott Woodruff
HSLDA Senior Counsel

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-> Who are the nation's best lobbyists?

We don't know that this has ever been determined; but we do know
that HSLDA's Federal Relations Department is the only
national organization lobbying on behalf of homeschoolers on
Capitol Hill.

More reasons to join HSLDA...
http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=1102

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