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Review Sex Offenders Register

Comment 15th July 2010

Review all entries on Sex Offenders Register and Categorise according to potential risk to others. Anyone not considered a risk to be removed. All people remaining on register to be regularly reviewed / assessed. No one to be left on the register "for life" without chance of re-assesment and removal.

Review of register with consideration for family of offenders who share addresses / names – to ensure that those innocent of any past offence are not punished by association.

Why does this matter?

The Sex Offenders Register serves an important purpose, but if there is not sufficient evidence and assesment behind the placing of people on the register, and the duration of time they are on it, it becomes meaningless. Police time is wasted on monitoring low / no risk people who have transgressed but learnt their lessons.  People are denied the ability to move on with their lives, and it becomes difficult to live a normal life with family.

The media / public lump all "sex offenders" together into one demonised, stigmatised group – regardless of the offence committed.

The proliferation of access to the internet, and somehow more irreverant attitude of young people will lead to many people ending up on the register, or in prison, despite never having touched another person. The possession of indecent material (the definition of which has been broadened recently – without widespread publicity to make people aware) is all that is taken into account in prosecution. Not motivation, not level of risk, not "amount" comparative to other material in a person's posession. Not enough effort is put into psychoanalysis and treatment of offenders to focus resources on the most dangerous.

This in combination with the register leads to increasing numbers who face difficulties reintegrating into society, difficulty getting jobs, constant worry over being "uncovered" even if they never commit a crime. If they are fortunate enought to have family who stand by them, spouses and children – their lives are also made even more difficult than they already are by the stress, and financial problems caused when people can not get work, or well paid work.

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