On May 30, 2020, the city of Philadelphia imposed a citywide, nighttime curfew in response to civil unrest that had occurred after a series of protests against police brutality. While the law provides the executive branch with limited power to curtail residents’ movements in emergency situations, the Philadelphia curfew continued for seven more days, even as the unrest ended. By Friday, June 5, the ACLU of Pennsylvania concluded that the city had surpassed its legal authority, unless it could produce evidence that would prove a public safety justification for the curfew.
On June 5, after the city announced another curfew for that evening, the ACLU of Pennsylvania sent a letter to Mayor James Kenney arguing that the curfew was no longer justified. Mayor Kenney instituted the curfew for one additional evening, June 6. On June 7, the curfew ended, and the city responded to the ACLU-PA arguing its justification for extending the curfew for eight days.