Why Reentry Programs Should Be Open to Sex Offenders

Why Reentry Programs Should Be Open to Sex Offenders By Debron B. – Criminal Justice Intern Reentry resources are pivotal to every returning citizen's reintegration into society, especially sex offenders.  Despite that, sex offenders have to deal with additional barriers that obstruct their reentry process.  It is believed that by giving offenders an opportunity to impact their communities positively, they will be less likely to recidivate back into the prison system.  Contradictory to this belief, sex offenders are often denied the chance to reintegrate into their local community and even get harassed for attempting to find work and employment.  It is beneficial for both the sex offenders and the general public that this subset of returning citizens is given the ability to use the same reentry resources as others. Sex offenders are in dire need of more reentry programs that cater to their specific residential and employment needs.  Numerous states still have employment …
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Why Sex Offender Residence Distance Restrictions Are Problematic

Why Sex Offender Residence Distance Restrictions Are Problematic By Emma V. – Criminal Justice Intern Individuals who have been mandated to register for their state’s sex offender registry must not only encounter hardships of societal re-entry after incarceration, but also navigate laws set forth by the state pertaining to sex offender registration requirements.  One of the most restrictive of these requirements dramatically complicates registrants’ integration back into society after incarceration.  Residence distance restrictions forbid sex offenders from living within a fixed number of feet or blocks from certain locations.  Many states restrict offenders from residing near playgrounds, schools, and churches.  Realistically, finding a residential area without at least one of these institutions proves to be near impossible.  This hinders a sex offender’s chance at a smooth transition back into society and causes even more strain on an individual who is unable to find hous…
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Sex Offender Registry Requirements Across the United States

What is the Sex Offender Registry? Every state and U.S. territory requires those convicted of sex offenses to be added to a registry to be monitored and tracked after their release back into the community.  Information about the offender is collected and shared with local and federal authorities, as well as the general public.  Requirements and restrictions are often placed on registered sex offenders.  That registration process is unique in each state and U.S. territory.   What is SORNA? The Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act (SORNA) was passed in 2006 as part of the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act to provide federal standards for jurisdictions to follow.  SORNA calls for states and U.S. territories to meet minimum requirements for sex offender registration and notification.   Why Are the Requirements for Sex Offender Registration Different Everywhere? …
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Do Sex Offenders Have to Take Polygraphs?

Do Sex Offenders Have to Take Polygraphs? Yes.  Polygraphs exams, or lie detector tests, are used by most federal districts to ensure that sex offenders are in compliance with the requirements of their supervision or treatment program. They are administered periodically, usually every six months, and generally last between 1.5-2 hours. The examination technique will be explained to your satisfaction prior to the onset of the examination and a detailed interview will be conducted by the polygraph examiner.  Based on that interview, the examiner will develop the questions for the actual test.  All the questions that will be asked during the polygraph examination will be read and reviewed with you, and you will be given an opportunity to ask for clarification of these questions before the examination is administered. Complete honesty during this phase is recommended since the exam will likely expose any dishonesty. While an admission of guilt may still result in consequence…
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Sex Offender Registry Requirements

Sex Offender Registry Requirements Conditions of Supervision aren’t the only set of rules that vary based on location.  For returning citizens who are required to register, the rules they must follow vary widely and can be confusing and overwhelming.  States have a lot of discretion in how they write their SOR laws and the result is a patchwork of restrictions.  Just look at the so called Thousand Foot Rule, which prohibits a registrant from living or working within 1,000 ft. of schools, playgrounds, daycares, etc.  For some states that “etc.” includes churches, making finding housing and employment in the Bible Belt near impossible.  In some states the Thousand Foot Rule is actually 1,500 ft., in others it’s 2,000.   Complicating matters even further, it is often left up to local law enforcement jurisdictions to determine what establishments meet the criteria for certain restrictions.  For example, the “etc.” for Georgia’s Thousand Foot Rule includes public pools. …
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