Joliet mall embraces new policy


The new Youth Supervision Policy is displayed on a security desk in the Louis Joliet Mall. The policy, which prohibits minors from entering after 5p.m. without adult supervision, went into effect on Oct. 13.

Brendan Burns, Staff Writer

  Louis Joliet Mall has adopted a new policy that guests age 17 and under are required to be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian after 5 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays.

  “Youth Supervision Policy (YSP) was in place for the last two years starting with Chicago Ridge. We have been in the works to launch Louis Joliet mall. It just happened to land on Oct. 13,” Sandy Maldonado-Martinez, Manager and Marketing Director of Louis Joliet mall and Chicago Ridge mall, said.

  No reason was given for the new policy, but Joliet Mayor Bob O’Derkirk was quoted as saying he believed the mall was just trying to be “proactive”.

 “It is something that we are seeing more and more across the country. It is something we have been working with for a while with our community and shoppers and retailers, and it is something that people have asked for,” Martinez said.

  Many teenagers think the policy is to avoid fights, but they don’t feel it will be effective.

  “I don’t think this will decrease the fighting that goes on because the fights primarily happened outside the mall, not in the mall,” Katie Carr, sophomore, said.

  “Most of the kids that go to the mall go to be with friends. The people that fight should be banned and shouldn’t be allowed to go back to the mall,” Josh Clem, junior, said.

  Not all of the businesses in the mall will be affected. The Cinemark movie theatre is not a part of the new ruling, unlike most of the malls around the country.

  “It was Cinemark’s choice to be a part of it or not. Because the Cinemark is so close to an entrance and an exit, it is very easy for us to have security check and have them go directly to the Cinemark and come back out whereas other malls have the Cinemark or AMC theatres in the middle and it’s hard to control. Therefore, they are not participating in the YSP,” Martinez said.

  Other restaurants at the mall such as Panera and T.G.I. Fridays also don’t apply to the YSP depending on what entrance is taken.

  “Technically, because they have outdoor entrances, you can come in through there. If you came in through the mall it would apply,” Martinez said.

  Security guards will be checking IDs at all mall entrances.

  “Because we are carding guests that look 18 and under, we hand out wrist bands to those that do have identification and can prove that they are over 18,” Martinez said.

  Anyone under 18 who is caught after 5 p.m. will need to wait in a waiting area where there is a security guard until an adult can pick them up.

  Many teens do not agree with this new ruling.

  “I think it’s not fair, I mean, if you’re 15 that’s one thing, but at the age of 17? I don’t know about that,” Jake Elder, junior said.

  Teens also do not like the fact that they will be carded at the front entrances.

  “I don’t think that’s right or fair that they must check for I.D.’s. Especially for the people that are just going to enjoy the mall. They can’t now,” Elder said.

  With fewer teens visiting the mall, some feel that profits may decrease.

  “Teens are more likely to spend money because they don’t pay the bills,” Elder said.

  “The kids that go there like to spend money. The only times they can go to spend a lot of money are Friday and Saturday nights,” Clem said.

  Teens would rather see other measures than having this new ruling.

  “I would say increase security, because it’s unfair to the kids that are just trying to have fun at the mall,” Elder said. “If they are I.D. checking me, I feel as if I can’t enjoy myself at the mall for other’s wrong doings.”