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Patty Wetterling, a prominent child safety advocate who founded the Jacob Wetterling Foundation after her son was abducted in 1989, recently told Human Rights Watch, I based my support of broad-based community notification laws on my assumption that sex offenders have the highest recidivism rates of any criminal.But the high recidivism rates I assumed to be true do not exist.
In addition, sex offender laws are predicated on the widespread assumption that most people convicted of sex offenses will continue to commit such crimes if given the opportunity.
Registration laws should be narrowed in scope and duration.
Publicly accessible online registries should be eliminated, and community notification should be accomplished solely by law enforcement officials.
They reflect a deep public yearning for safety in a world that seems increasingly threatening.
Every child has the right to live free from violence and sexual abuse.