DE PERE - Do we allow fear to override our judgment when it comes to safety? When looking at current residency restrictions toward sex offenders in Green Bay, it appears that the answer is yes.
It goes without saying that it is our duty to promote the safety and well-being of children and other vulnerable persons from sexual crimes. However, the fear and stigma around sex offenders has led us to enact policies that offer a false sense of safety. There is no evidence from research indicating that residency restrictions promote safety and reduce recidivism.
There is evidence, however, that these restrictions increase homelessness (an already significant problem in Green Bay), limit the ability to effectively monitor sex offenders, reduce the overall ability to successfully reintegrate sex offenders into the community and ultimately lead to increased chances of recidivism.
In order to protect children from becoming victims, it’s time to look at the facts and advocate for more effective policies regarding sex offenders living in the community.