A bill that NYRA members have been working on for several months finally met with defeat at the hands of the DC City Council. Initially proposed in January by city council member Jim Graham (D – Ward 1), the initial bill would have effectively banned everyone under 21 from music venues, clubs, and other events in the city. After a vocal initial outcry Graham began hosting weekly workgroup meetings to discuss details of the bill with many different stake-holders in the city. NYRA attended half a dozen of these meetings and was able to work out many important compromises in the bill language.
Ultimately though, the compromises did not go far enough and the bill would have still imposed unnecessary restrictions, penalties and burdens upon young people in and around Washington, DC. In early June the bill was tabled by the city council and many key provisions that NYRA opposed are unlikely to resurface. NYRA still strongly supports the over arching goal of the bill – to keep young people safe – and hopes that elements of the bill that improve safety for all DC residents without discriminating against and punishing young people should be passed by the council.