Sex Offender Help With Resources
People living on the sex offender registry face multiple challenges after incarceration or parole. Collateral damage is also a major issue for families of ex-offenders. Registrants (sex offenders), loved ones, friends, and families are often shunned by communities. Sex offender help with resources is a must for successful reentry and living a life as normal as possible.
Support for the formerly incarcerated is common among nonprofit organizations and ministries, but fewer support sex offenders. Why is this? Are registrants so vile that people don’t want to help them become successful after prison? It’s my opinion that there are less help and resources, such as employment and housing. Registrants face unique hurdles such as community notification and living restrictions. For example, in Florida, sex offenders face “no-go-zones”:
If the victim was under the age of 18, a prohibition on living within 1,000 feet of a school, child care facility, park, playground, or other place where children regularly congregate, as prescribed by the court.
Lack of Employment
In addition to widespread living restrictions, registrants often face employment “banishment” from business owners and corporate companies. On a list of more than 330 registered sex offenders in Tulsa, Oklahoma, nearly 40 percent were listed as unemployed, disabled, or retired, records show. As for corporate companies, an unconfirmed list includes these retail stores that refuse to hire sex offenders:
…and many more.
Additional Restrictions From Parole/Probation
For former offenders that are on federal supervision or state parole, additional restrictions are put into place. Sex offender support is crucial during this time of supervision. Examples of restrictions on supervision may include computer monitoring, curfews, weekly check-ins, sex offender counseling, inability to be around minors (including family members), and ankle monitors. More serious offenders may face lifetime supervision. For registrants that face lifetime probation, restrictions may include: needing to obtain permission before accepting a new job, being subject to searches of your belongings, car, and residence for cause, and being registered as a tier 2 or 3 offender.
The Complexities of the Sex Offender Registry
Prior to 1994, there was no federal law governing sex offender registration and notification in the United States. In 2006, Congress passed the Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act (SORNA), which fully revamped the federal standards for sex offender registration and notification, and repealed the federal standards outlined in the Wetterling Act. Since 2006, a number of bills have added to SORNA’s provisions. It was Megan’s Law that mandated the public disclosure of information about registered sex offenders when required to protect the public.
With little evidence that the sex offender registry keeps our communities safer, states and communities continue to implement additional restrictions. In J.J, Prescott’s study, Do Sex Offender Registration and Notification Laws Affect Criminal Behavior? there’s even evidence to suggest that the registry is tied to higher recidivism rates. In addition, numerous reports show that the registry offers a false sense of security.
With states and communities implementing restrictions and ordinances against sex offenders, navigating the registry can be problematic. For families of offenders, the registry can often be a confusing mess with difficulties finding accurate information. Plus, keeping up with frequently changing laws adds to the confusion.
Lack of Social Life
An issue that is common among former offenders is the lack of social life. In other terms, registrants face social rejection and ostracism. This form of physiological punishment is an emotional rollercoaster. Being shunned by family members and friends after incarceration is not an uncommon experience. The exclusion affects not only the brain, but it also has a negative effect physically.
According to Dr. Kipling Williams,
“Being excluded or ostracized is an invisible form of bullying that doesn’t leave bruises, and therefore we often underestimate its impact.”
In the study, Feeling Hurt: Revisiting the Relationship Between Social and Physical Pain, the origins of overlap is observed:
“Over time, comparison with physical pain has been conceptually influential in raising the profile of social exclusion, ostracism, and rejection. From an evolutionary perspective, the origin of overlap is founded on humans’ fundamental need to belong (Baumeister & Leary, 1995) and the effectiveness of pain as a threat signal for directing attention and marshaling resources to cope (Eccleston & Crombez, 1999)”
What Support Is Needed?
A wide range of support is needed for registrants reentering society, and even years after their conviction dates. As a professional consultant (and a registrant), I was surprise to see a lack of services for former sex offenders. Sure, there are prison consultants that assist inmates in legal matters before and during their prison terms. But living on the “list” can be a life altering experience that often needs additional services after incarceration. This may include coaching, additional legal services (petition to be removed from the registry, etc.), registry research, and job and housing placement.
Living on the registry has been a challenge for me. But there’s hope. Sex offender help with resources is the goal of my organization, The Outspoken Consultant. I understand how difficult living on the registry can be. As my client, I not only provide the services described above, I become your personal advocate. You need someone on your side. In addition to individuals on the registry, I also support families and loved ones of former offenders.
The sex offender registry does not need to destroy your life or family. Contact me today. I’d love to have a private and judgement free conversation and to see how I can help.