Northlake Mall will begin requiring that anyone under the age of 18 be accompanied by a supervising adult 21 years of age or older on Fridays and Saturdays after 5 pm. The new policy, which was developed in consultation with community leaders throughout Charlotte-Mecklenburg, goes into effect on June 12.

“Over the past year we have had a significant number of youth in the Mall on Friday and Saturday evenings without adult supervision,” said Phil Morosco, general manager of Northlake Mall, a 1.1 million-square-foot regional shopping center in north Charlotte. “When you have such a large amount of unsupervised youngsters together, it is difficult to provide a safe environment. We believe that an adult supervision policy is in everyone’s best interests – safety must always be our No. 1 priority.”

In developing the adult supervision policy, Northlake Mall management sought the advice of business and community leaders and law enforcement.

“One of the most important challenges we face in Charlotte-Mecklenburg today is providing meaningful activities for our young people when they are not in school,” said James Mitchell Jr., District 2 representative on Charlotte City Council. “The safety situation that has developed at Northlake Mall is a reflection of this challenge, and I commend the Mall on implementing a policy that is fair and responsive and which has the best interests of our community as its primary goal.”

Northlake Mall also studied similar programs at shopping centers throughout the region and across the country. The Mall has incorporated best practices from those centers into its policy.

“A growing number of shopping centers have successfully implemented adult supervision policies that have been well received by community leadership, shoppers and retailers,” Morosco said. “There is heightened awareness everywhere concerning the safety of children and teens, which is reflected in our new policy.”

Northlake Mall is a 1.1-million-square-foot regional shopping center location at I-77 and W.T. Harris Blvd. in the northern suburbs of Charlotte, N.C. The two-level enclosed mall features more than 120 stores and restaurants, plus five anchors: Belk, Dillard’s, Macy’s, Dick’s Sporting Goods and AMC Theatres. On the Web at www.shopnorthlake.com.