Posted on October 4, 2022

Jaywalking Is Decriminalized in California Under New Law

Colleen Shalby, Los Angeles Times, October 1, 2022

Pedestrians take note: A new law decriminalizes safe jaywalking in California.

Gov. Gavin Newsom on Friday signed the “Freedom to Walk” bill sponsored by Assemblyman Phil Ting (D-San Francisco). The law, which goes into effect on Jan. 1, comes years after activists have argued that jaywalking rules disproportionately affect marginalized and low-income residents.

Under the new law, pedestrians would be able to legally cross the street outside of designated intersections without the threat of a hefty citation “unless a reasonably careful person would realize there is an immediate danger of collision with a moving vehicle or other device moving exclusively by human power.”


Pedestrians currently face a ticket if they cross the street outside of a marked crosswalk and don’t finish their trek before the countdown signal finishes. {snip}

Data cited by Ting’s office from the California Racial and Identity Profiling Act shows that Black Californians are up to 4.5 times more likely to be stopped for jaywalking than those who are white.