By Kate Cagle
PORTLAND (KPTV) - Months after community outrage forced a sex offender therapy clinic out of Sellwood, the counseling center has a new home and new neighbors pushing back.
Whole Systems Counseling opened its doors in March inside a business complex on Southeast 126th and Stark. Inside the same business center are lawyers, other therapists and medical offices.
One of the clinic's new neighbors is Oregon state Rep. Jessica Vega Pederson who is now working on legislation to regulate where clinics like Whole Systems can be located.
"My therapist is right around the corner here," said neighbor Travis Murphy. "She called and told me not to let my son walk to therapy by himself anymore."
Murphy said neighbors did not receive any notice from Whole Systems that they were moving in, but that concern spread through word-of-mouth.
There is now a petition circulating to force the clinic to move once again.
Whole Systems provides therapy for sex offenders, their families and victims. Their website claims the clinic is working with community members, legislators and clients to create guidelines for sex offender therapy clinics.
"The goal of the task force will be to examine the current process in Oregon for counseling office site selection," according to the website.
There is also a link where people can volunteer and additional information about how the clinic operates.
Rep. Vega Pederson says she is also seeking input into where sex offender offices should be allowed to operate.
She will be attending a community meeting April 30 at 7 p.m. at David Douglas High School.
Saturday, April 13, 2013
OR - State rep. working on bill to regulate sex offender clinics