Target: Suffolk County City Council
Goal: Do not deputize members of a victims advocacy group to monitor registered sex-offenders.
A new law in New York regarding sex offender monitoring is now in the hands of a victim’s advocacy group. In Suffolk County, members of the Parents for Megan’s Law were given the responsibility to track and monitor registered sex offenders. Suffolk County lawmakers claim the new approach as cost effective protection, but many are calling it a vigilante exercise, and rightly so.
Being convicted of a sexual offense doesn’t require child molestation or rape to be involved. Statutory rape, with both parties consent, is considered a sexual offense. Also considered a sexual offense is prostitution, sending or receiving obscene sexual content via SMS messages, or even public urination in some jurisdictions. Many people are unjustly convicted as a sex offender, which then leads others to believe they are child molesters or sexual assaulters. While there are plenty of sex offenders in the world that have destroyed families and individuals lives with their choices, the process of monitoring them should still be be operated by law enforcement who don’t have a personal experience with similar circumstances.
Allowing a victim’s advocacy group to perform duties of law enforcement is unjustified. Even the lawmakers understand that the implementation of the vigilant monitoring is essentially allowing a group with the most aggression and fervor against sex offenders, to harass them in public, including those who don’t necessarily deserve it. The method of monitoring and tracking is unknown, however those who are unjustly labeled as a sex-offenders have to now deal with even more stress because of one mistake in their past. What is clear about the operation is that the civilians employed are not allowed to carry firearms, and must be former law enforcement employees. By signing the petition below, you will help revoke the power of this vigilante exercise, due to its unprofessional and unconstitutional methods.
Dear Suffolk County City Council,
Allowing members of the victim’s advocacy group Parents for Megan’s Law to perform duties of law enforcement is unjustified and unconstitutional. Monitoring and tracking of registered sex offenders should be performed in a professional and lawful manner, not as a vigilante exercise. You claim that the transition is a cost-effective way of protecting your Suffolk County citizens, which is true, but giving the power to a non-profit organization with the most aggression and fervor against sex offenders is absurd. You are allowing them to take control and possibly do whatever they deem necessary, whether legal or not, to monitor, track, and harass sex offenders publicly.
The situations involved in conviction as a sex offender can range from child-molestation and sexual assault, to prostitution, ‘sexting’, and even public urination. Whether the offender was justly convicted or not, this level of scrutiny is unconstitutional. I urge you to repeal this law, and follow other methods being initiated around the country that involve basing restrictions on the possibility an offender will repeat an offense.
[Your Name Here]
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