Philadelphia Votes To Ban Ski Masks In Public Areas

todayDecember 3, 2023 3

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The Philadelphia City Council has voted to ban the wearing of ski masks in public spaces in an effort to help law enforcement. This will include parks, schools, public transit, and other city-owned buildings. Offenders will face fines of $250 each time and $2,000 if they wear the mask during the commission of a crime.

“The City of Philadelphia has been under siege with individuals who use ski masks to commit crimes. It’s caught onto not just young people, but young adults who have made this a particular thing to do,” council member Anthony Phillips told CNN. “The Philadelphia Police Department can’t tell who’s a criminal and not a criminal, which makes it difficult for crimes to be solved in Philadelphia.”

Read More: Undercover Detective Testifies At YNW Melly’s Trial Wearing A Ski Mask

An Eagles Fan Wears A Ski Mask To Lincoln Financial Field

PHILADELPHIA, PA – DECEMBER 23: A Philadelphia Eagles fan wears a ski mask during the game against the Houston Texans at Lincoln Financial Field on December 23, 2018 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Philadelphia defeats Houston 32-30. (Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images) *** Local Caption ***

Sarah Peterson, a spokesperson for the mayor’s office, told CNN: “The administration will review the legislation, and in the meantime looks forward to our ongoing work with City Council on the urgent matter of ensuring public safety.” Philadelphia Police Department Deputy Commissioner Francis Healy previously complained about mask mandates during the COVID-19 pandemic, arguing that they “complicated policing.” He explained in November during a committee hearing: “There was a time not so long ago when any average police officer would see a person donning a mask before entering a convenience store or a bank and they would believe a robbery was about to occur. However, the pandemic changed that mindset where people were actually more fearful of people without masks than with masks.”

Solomon Furious Worlds, an attorney with the American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania, conversely argued that the bill will disproportionately affect innocent people of color who may be wearing a face covering. He told CNN: “If the city council was serious about curbing crime they would spend time and money on mental health crises in the city, housing in the city, child care in the city so single parents could work more, after school programs, education, things like that.” Be on the lookout for further updates on the bill banning ski masks in Philadelphia on HotNewHipHop.

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