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2/25/2011 12:37:22 PM
Home School Legal Defense Association
New Mexico: Hearing Today on Daytime Curfew Bill

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From the HSLDA E-lert Service...
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February 25, 2011

New Mexico--Hearing Today on Daytime Curfew Bill

Dear HSLDA Members and Friends:

Representative Dennis Kintigh is sponsoring a bill that would allow
any county or municipality in New Mexico to adopt a curfew ordinance
to regulate the actions of children during either daytime or nighttime
hours.

The bill was referred to the House Judiciary Committee and is
scheduled for a hearing today, February 25, 2011, at 1:30 p.m. in Room
309 at the Capitol. We are asking you to call and/or email the House
Judiciary Committee members listed below to voice your opposition. It
would also be helpful for you to contact your representative as well.

If a county or municipality wanted to adopt a daytime curfew
ordinance, House Bill 254 would allow that jurisdiction to restrict
the actions of any children during any school day. Under this bill,
any daytime curfew ordinance could require a school-age child to be
present on school premises. Such a daytime curfew ordinance could
negatively impact the freedom of a 16- or 17- year-old homeschool
student who is going to music lessons, co-op classes or other activity
with the permission of their parent. Homeschool students could also be
restricted by these daytime curfew ordinances even if their home
education program is not in session on that day.

HSLDA opposes this bill, because it restricts homeschoolers' freedom
to allow their children to be seen in public during school hours. We
are aware that some amendments might be added to "exempt" homeschool
children from these curfews; however, the problem with any exemption
is the application of the exemption. Typically, exemptions for
homeschool children are not going to prevent your child from be
stopped, questioned, and possibly detained under any daytime curfew
that is eventually enacted.

REQUESTED ACTION

1) Please call and/or email the members of the House Judiciary
Committee and give them this message in your own words:

"Please vote against House Bill 254. This bill will allow counties and
municipalities to enact restrictive curfew ordinances that would
violate the constitutional freedom of law-abiding parents and
children. Daytime curfews interfere with parents' fundamental right to
the custody and control of their children as well as their right to
direct the upbringing and education of their children. There is little
evidence that daytime curfews significantly reduce juvenile crime
during curfew hours. I am opposed to House Bill 254 in spite of any
amendments that might be proposed."

You do not need to mention that you are a homeschooler.

House Judiciary Committee members are as follows:
Representative Al Park (Chair) - (505) 986-4413 - alpark.nm@gmail.com
Representative Joseph Cervantes (Vice Chair) - (505) 986-4234
- Joseph@cervanteslawnm.com
Representative Eliseo Lee Alcon - (505) 986-4243 - eliseoalcon@msn.com
Representative Paul C. Bandy - (505) 986-4248 - paul@paulbandy.org
Representative Cathrynn N. Brown - (505) 986-4211
- brown55@windstream.net
Representative Gail Chasey - (505) 986-4844 - gailchasey@msn.com
Representative David C. Chavez - (505) 986-4451
- david@davidcchavez.com
Representative Zachary J. Cook - (505) 986-4454 - zachjcook@gmail.com
Representative David L. Doyle - (505) 986-4249 - ddoyle@ebnm.com
Representative Brian F. Egolf - (505) 986-4423 - brian@brianegolf.com
Representative Nate Gentry - (505) 986-4249 - natefornm@gmail.com
Representative Antonio "Moe" Maestas - (505) 986-4233
- rep16@moejustice.com
Representative Bill B. O'Neill - (505) 986-4464
- oneillhd15@fastmail.us
Representative William "Bill" R. Rehm - (505) 986-4248 -
bill.rehm@nmlegis.gov
Representative Mimi Stewart - (505) 986-4344 - mstewart@osogrande.com

2) If your state representative is not on the Judiciary Committee,
please contact him or her with the following message in your own
words:

"Please vote against House Bill 254. This bill will allow counties and
municipalities to enact restrictive curfew ordinances that would
violate the constitutional freedom of law-abiding parents and
children. Daytime curfews interfere with parents' fundamental right to
the custody and control of their children as well as their right to
direct the upbringing and education of their children. There is little
evidence that daytime curfews significantly reduce juvenile crime
during curfew hours."

How to find your Senator/Representative:

Go to http://www.nmlegis.gov/lcs/legislatorsearch.aspx , and type in
your zip code, or call the New Mexico Legislature's main switchboard
at (505) 986-4300 and ask for your senator or representative.

BACKGROUND

- Daytime curfews violate a minor's fundamental constitutional right
to freedom of movement as guaranteed by the Fourteenth Amendment on
the public streets, highways and areas of the city without being
subjected to prior governmental restraint.

- Daytime curfews violate the fundamental legal principle of the
presumption of innocence. This presumption is protected by the Due
Process Clause of the Fourteenth and Fifth Amendments to the United
States Constitution.

- Daytime curfews result in violations of minors' Fourth Amendment
rights to be secure against unreasonable searches and seizures. A
policeman should not stop and question anyone unless there are actual
facts that make it reasonable to suspect that a crime has occurred. If
a policeman stops and questions a person without such facts, it is a
violation of the citizen's rights under the Fourth Amendment.

- Daytime curfews interfere with parents' fundamental right to direct
the upbringing and education of their children, especially for parents
with children in small private schools who often work outside the
classroom.

- Daytime curfews are, in essence, beefed-up truancy ordinances. All
states have already addressed the area of truancy in a comprehensive
way. There is no need for new laws addressing the issue of truancy.
The present laws addressing minors simply need to be enforced.

- Daytime curfews will result in selective enforcement. Since officers
will not be stopping every juvenile during school hours to check their
ID, they will be selective. This opens up the extremely dangerous
potential for unequal treatment of minors based upon race, appearance,

dress, etc. This type of ordinance will simply divert attention from
real crime prevention programs and interfere with effective police
work.

- There is no evidence that daytime curfews significantly reduce
juvenile crime during curfew hours. Statistics demonstrate that there
is very little juvenile crime during these hours even when there is no
daytime curfew. Additionally, the serious juvenile law-breaker will
not be deterred by the daytime curfew. However, hundreds, if not
thousands of innocent minors will suffer the inconvenience of
unwarranted stops, detentions and harassment, not to mention the added

cost for taxpayers for the enforcement of the curfew.

- Daytime curfews dangerously train young citizens to accept, as
normal, constraints that are inconsistent with the freedom they should
be educated to enjoy and use responsibly in their adult years.

- Daytime curfews send a message to self-disciplined and responsible
young people that the community makes no distinction between them and
irresponsible adults who abuse freedom in ways detrimental to the
community.

- Daytime curfews will likely result in registration of privately
educated students with police departments with the attendant issuance
of ID cards and badges.

Curfew Anecdotes
> Kyle* was a California homeschooler who was out during public school
hours. He was picked up by the police and transported to the local
truancy center. If convicted, he would have faced a fine of $195.00.

> Amy,* who is homeschooled, lives just outside of the Los Angeles
city limits. One morning in 2005, before departing to attend her
uncle's funeral, she took a short walk. But as Amy was walking, she
was accosted by a police officer who ticketed her for being on the
street in violation of Los Angeles' Daytime Loitering Ordinance.

> Jacob,* a twelve year old homeschooler in California, went to the
store one block from his home on February 2, 2006, to buy paper for
his homeschool program. A police officer picked him up, brought him
home, and cited him for violation of the daytime curfew.

> On September 9, 1999, Adam,* age 13, was stopped, detained, and
issued a citation by a Los Angeles police officer. He had been walking
on the sidewalk with no apparent unlawful purpose. On the day Adam
received the citation, his home school was not in session. Fairhaven
Christian Academy did not open for the school year until four days
later.

For more information on daytime curfews, please see our analysis of
this issue at http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?ID=2102 .

Thank you for your support of homeschooling freedom in New Mexico!

Sincerely,

Thomas J. Schmidt
HSLDA Staff Attorney

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-> How many news articles did you read this morning over your
oatmeal?

We live in a world where concise information presented at the
right time can make a big difference in the outcome of important
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affect your homeschool. Our emails and website enable you to
take quick, decisive action. Please consider becoming a part of
this team.

More reasons to join HSLDA...
http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=1923

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