Welcome to the Issues section of the USA FAIR website. You can use the navigation buttons above to explore our positions on the many facets of the sex offender registry.
USA FAIR supports the registration requirements and time periods enacted by the original sex offender registry law, known as the Jacob Wetterling Act. Given the serious nature of many sexual offenses, it is reasonable for police departments to have up-to-date information on former offenders in order to be aware of who resides in a community and to aid in potential investigations.
However, sound policies of sex offender management have been supplanted by emotionally driven laws enacted in response to heinous crimes committed by monstrous offenders who are not representative of the population of former sex offenders as a whole.
A one-size-fits-all approach in response to high profile crimes has resulted in a never-ending escalation of sanctions that continue to be imposed on law-abiding registrants – and by extension their families – years after they have served their sentence. These retroactive and expanding burdens, such as residency restrictions, have distorted what was originally intended as a civil registry and turned it into a new instrument of inflicting never-ending punishment.
These laws were once rationalized by the mistaken belief in high sex offender recidivism, an argument that is no longer sustainable in the face of overwhelming and conclusive evidence that most former sex offenders pose little risk of reoffending. The Studies section of this website presents the leading research, which proves that contrary to popular belief, sex offenders actually have one of the lowest recidivism rates among all offender groups in the criminal justice system.
We invite you to review the issues and studies presented on this website and to join USA FAIR in supporting evidence-based laws to protect the community, while allowing law-abiding former offenders and their families to continue rebuilding their lives.