Should the sex offender registry be public? Where provinces stand – National

Despite the federal government rolling out amendments to the current list, there are still no plans to open a national sex offender registry in Canada.

Ottawa is Suggested series of updates It is registered in the registry, but is prohibited by law from being made public.

Currently, only Canadian Police Services have access to this database through provincial and territory sex offender registry centers.

States cannot release information from national registries to the public, but “some states may consider creating separate registration or notification systems to address specific safety concerns within their jurisdiction.” We are,” said Diana Ebadi, a spokeswoman for Justice Minister David Rametti.

“Police agencies must use personal information in their databases only for law enforcement purposes and only when permitted by law,” she told Global News in an email Friday.

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In recent years, Canada has been required to publish sex offender registers, and some advocates argue that people should have the right to know if they live next door to anyone convicted of a sex offense.

A petition that began three years ago With more than 37,000 signatures, the public registry made the request, saying it would “create a safer environment for everyone.”

“Unlike in the United States, we cannot know if these adults have already been convicted of previous sexual offenses,” the petition said.

The Registry is a vehicle for police to obtain up-to-date information on convicted sex offenders nationwide and is intended as a tool to help prevent and assist in investigations of sex crimes.

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Dalya Israel, executive director of the Salal Sexual Violence Support Center, said the decision to publish this list should be carefully considered so that people know what to do with the information.

“There’s a crisis in this country where people don’t know who to call if they’re scared or how to make it safer when they’re dealing with their mental health,” she told Global News. Told.

Israel says it needs “environmental support available to people” who may become upset or anxious if they learn there are people on the register living in their communities .

“I think if something like that were to happen, it would have to be done with really clear intentions.”

in the United States, National sex offender public site There is information from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, US territories, and Native American lands.

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Like Canada, the UK does not have an official list of sex offenders. police can disclose To parents, guardians, and guardians if someone has a record of child sex offenses.

where does the state stand?

On Wednesday, Canada’s Justice Department announced a series of updates to the sex offender registry in a new bill before the Senate.

Several states told Global News they are considering these amendments included in Bill S-12, but they would have to go through a congressional process before they become law.

But what is the state’s position on sharing information about sex offenders with the public?

In Alberta, information from sex offender registries can be disclosed “only if there is a risk of serious harm to public health or safety,” according to a statement from the government to Global News.

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The state has a public “High Risk Offenders” website to support the disclosure of information related to sex offenders.

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In British Columbia, meanwhile, the BC Attorney General’s office said police can release information from the registry only if there is a risk to public safety.

However, public notices by police or the BC Collection that a sex offender has been released from custody and is now living in a particular area will never mention that someone is on the sex offender registry.

“You may say you’re a sex offender or under state supervision based on your actual conviction, but you’re on the National Sex Offender Registry because SOIRA specifically prohibits it. never say,” the ministry told Global News.

Manitoba said federal law will continue to prohibit public access to the national registry.

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A Manitoba Justice spokesperson told Global News, “The proposed Bill S-12 amendment does not appear to change these restrictions on disclosure/access and will continue to prohibit disclosure of information to the public.” Told.

New Brunswick said it had not yet considered the proposed bill or a state law on the disclosure of sex offender registries.

Ontario did not comment on opening the register to residents, but said the province is considering the federal bill carefully.

© 2023 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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