Once again, people living on the sex offender registry are treated like modern-day lepers, and this time it’s at your local church. With law enforcement estimates that 88% of sexual abuse is never reported to authorities, nine of ten people who have sexually abused children will NOT have a criminal background nor be on the sex offender registry. Churches do not need to fear the sex offender or the new person sitting in the back pew. People required to register have the right to worship just like any individual in the United States. This right is protected by our constitution.

Instead of churches banning people required to register, pastors and church leaders need to work on ministering rather than treating people like modern-day lepers. By doing this, we’ll have happier and safer congregations.

 

Report: Child Sexual Abuse in Protestant Christian Congregations

“Soul Murder”, a phrase coined by Dr. James Gilligan, professor of psychology and law at NYU, can be used to describe incarceration. In other words, the trauma of prison can destroy someone’s personality and their sense of being alive. This negative effect on someone’s life can also be described as Post-Incarceration Syndrome.

 

How does one move past trauma from being incarcerated? What about the trauma from being on the sex offender registry? This podcast episode offers a few tips on how to move past trauma and regain your sense of worth.

 

“A trauma can be defined as any significant negative event or incident that shaped us. It can emerge from any impactful instance that made us feel bad, scared, hurt, or ashamed. By this definition, we have all experienced some degree of trauma in the process of growing up.” – Trauma expert, Dr. Peter Levine.

There are at least four cities in the United States that have passed fair chance housing legislation: Portland, Seattle, Oakland, and Richmond. In addition, other cities have a variation of fair chance housing policies: Urbana, Illinois; Madison, Wisconsin; San Francisco, California; Newark, New Jersey and growing numbers of other jurisdictions.

Are these fair chance housing ordinances actually fair for people living on the sex offender registry? In this podcast episode, I take a look at these ordinances and how they affect registrants and their families. With a high number of homeless sex offenders, fair chance housing is important now than ever.

Seattle Fair Chance Housing FAQ
Oakland Fair Chance Housing FAQ
Fair Chance Housing Website