Rayong police criticised for imposing 10pm curfew on kids under 18 years old

Photo via Facebook/ สถานีตำรวจภูธรเมืองระยอง

Mueang Rayong Police Station in the eastern province of Rayong is facing criticism for imposing a 10pm curfew on residents aged under 18 years old.

The official Facebook page of Mueang Rayong Police Station shared the curfew announcement yesterday, January 10.

“From today, people under the age of 18 are not allowed to leave their homes after 10pm without a parent or guardian. Anyone who breaks the rules and goes out on the streets or in public places at night will be detained at the police station until their parents or guardians come to pick them up.

“This measure is to prevent all kinds of crimes, fights and drug use among children. Police would like to ask for everyone’s cooperation in closely monitoring children under your supervision. Sincerely, Mueang Rayong Police Station.”

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Some netizens found the rules reasonable and appropriate, adding that many Thai teenagers gather at night and disrupt communities, while others saw the law as a violation of young people’s freedom.

The post was later deleted from the Facebook page following the social media debate, and Mueang Rayong Police Station Superintendent Weerapong Kongkaew stepped forward to clarify the matter.

Cooperation request

Weerapong insisted that police were only asking for the cooperation of residents and that it was not a law that would lead to legal punishment.

“We want the youth to stay home after school, eat dinner, take a shower, read books or do homework and go to bed. We just want families with children to trust that the police will take care of them if they do something wrong outside their homes.”

Weerapong explained that a recent clash between children who dropped out of school and those who were still studying prompted him to launch the 10pm curfew.

Weerapong added that police were able to distinguish between children who left home for a reasonable purpose and those who went out at night for a negative purpose.

Despite clarification from the superintendent, some social media users argued that the police should not have announced the rule in the first place, as it would have caused panic regarding the situation in the province. If the police were able to distinguish between well-behaved and misbehaving children, they could proceed with their work as usual and prosecute children displaying unruly behaviour.

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Petch Petpailin

Petpailin, or Petch, is a Thai translator and writer for The Thaiger who focuses on translating breakingThai news stories into English. With a background in field journalism, Petch brings several years of experience to the English News desk at The Thaiger. Before joining The Thaiger, Petch worked as a content writer for several known blogging sites in Bangkok, including Happio and The Smart Local. Her articles have been syndicated by many big publishers in Thailand and internationally, including the Daily Mail, The Sun and the Bangkok Post. She is a news writer who stops reading news on the weekends to spend more time cafe hopping and petting dwarf shrimp! But during office hours, you can find Petch on LinkedIn and you can reach her by email at petch@thethaiger.com.

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