Dallas restricting operating hours won’t apply to strip clubs for now, judge to decide in the upcoming weeks
Dallas, Texas – The City of Dallas restricting operating hours ordinance that was about to take effect starting Monday, will not be immediately enforced, the city confirmed.
As multiple news sources already reported, according to the City of Dallas ordinance, Dallas based strip clubs were forced to close between 2 a.m. and 6 a.m., but the ordinance will now be postponed at least until February after a legal challenge from attorneys representing sexually oriented businesses was filed against the city.
U.S. Chief District Court Judge for the Northern District of Texas, Barbara M. G. Lynn, denied a motion for a temporary restraining order from the Association of Club Executives of Dallas, a trade group that represents sexually oriented businesses, in its lawsuit against the city of Dallas.
The preliminary injunction hearing is set to take place during the week of Feb. 7 and until the then, the ordinance won’t be enforced. If Lynn agrees with the plaintiffs in that hearing, the ordinance would not be enforced until a possible trial.
The decision for the ordinance came in an effort reduce the number of violent crimes in the city of Dallas. According to the Dallas Police Chief Eddie Garcia, there has been outsized number of 911 calls within a 500-foot radius of sexually oriented businesses during that four-hour time period.
Those who are trying to boycott the ordinance are mostly people who work at these businesses and one of them is Lee Molina who claims that working at those hours allows her to support her family.
“It is going to affect my life, my parents, everybody else in this room who has someone other than themselves to look after,” Molina said.
The ordinance was largely supported by the city leaders and Dallas Mayor Eric Johnson who said before the voting that some other major Texas cities has similar ordinances in place. According to him, Fort Worth, San Antonio and El Paso are among the cities to have similar restrictions.
“This is about public safety,” Johnson said. “It’s not about being puritanical or shaming anyone’s career choices.”
Moments after the vote attorneys for sexually oriented businesses challenged the ordinance in federal court, leading to Friday’s hearing.
A date for the hearing is expected to be finalized next week.