Should Sex Offender Registries Include Juveniles’ Names?


A new report from the advocacy group Human Rights Watch (HRW) harshly criticizes the placement of youth sex offender names on registries.

Pointing to studies that find that incidents of juvenile sex offense are not considered predictive of future adult behavior, HRW argues that placing minors on sex offender registries does little to advance community safety. Instead, the report's authors write, registries work as a continued punishment for the offenders as they enter adulthood.

“The harm befalling youth sex offenders can be severe. Youth sex offenders on the registry experience severe psychological harm. They are stigmatized, isolated, often depressed,” the authors write.

The report notes several studies that place the recidivism rate for youth sex offenders at between four and ten percent, well below the 40 percent national recidivism rate for all crimes.

Read the full report HERE.

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