Oregon Voices Supports Justice, Fairness, and Rational Laws.
Projected Changes in Oregon's Sex Offender Registry
In 2013, the Oregon legislature passed HB2549. The bill was designed to more Oregon toward a risk-based system of managing its registry, and specifically to offer a route off the registry for low-risk former offenders. The bill sets up three levels of risk: low, moderate, and high, and everyone on the registry is to be placed in one of these three categories through the use of an actuarial instrument. For adult males, the instrument is the STATIC-99R. Women and juveniles will be assessed using the Level of Services/Case Management Inventory (LS/CMI).
Scoring using the STATIC-99R has already begun and will be ongoing until the entire registry has been scored. Registrants classified as low risk will eventually be able to apply to be removed from the registry. Registrants classified as moderate or high will eventually be able to apply to be reclassified at a lower level after a period of time.
The projected phase-in date for the new program was scheduled for Jan. 1, 2019, but it now appears that it will be later than that. Oregon Voices members are actively participating in the planning and phase-in part of this process to ensure that the concerns and rights of registered citizens are addressed.
The fullest available explanation of the new system currently available is probably the one on the Parole Board Website: http://www.oregon.gov/BOPPPS/Pages/sonl.aspx
NATIONAL LEGISLATION TO PAY ATTENTION TO:
The Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act (SORNA) of 2007 is a badly written and cost-ineffective piece of federal legislation. SORNA , aka "Adam Walsh Act" was enacted at the federal level with the intention to "provide[s] a new comprehensive set of minimum standards for sex offender registration and notification in the United States." SORNA mandates frequent, in-person registration for former offenders many of whom committed offenses long ago, and have proven they constitute little or no risk. Some counties and states have interpreted this to include reclassification of registered citizens when they move from one state to another seeking employment or a change in their life. SORNA also mandates lengthy mandatory state prison sentences for a myriad of minor technical violations of SORNA.
In March 2016 a bill was introduced in Congress: "S.2613 - Adam Walsh Reauthorization Act of 2016" and passed the Senate in May 2016. That bill, which was sold to Congress as a way to add funding and criteria that benefited victims of sexual assault, also increased the amount of funding for enforcement of more rigorous registries and restrictions.
SORNA has never been enacted in Oregon. In some states, the money that the federal government provides for complying with SORNA has been touted as a justification for implementing SORNA. Since SORNA is a federal bill, the Oregon state legislature has to vote on whether or not to put it in place in Oregon. The method of enforcement of these laws have not been effective in the states where SORNA is the current practice. The most current studies in Michigan and Connecticut from 2010 show that keeping someone incarcerated does not promote public safety.
However, SORNA, as federal law, promoted by the Department of Justice, does require constant monitoring of the Oregon legislative sessions to prevent overturning Oregon's previous decision to not implement or insertion of offensive pieces of the legislation into other bills.
We will be providing updates on this page as SORNA continues to be challenged across the nation, and any relevant court decisions that affect it's mandates.
If you would like to work on the Oregon Voices Legislative Committee, please contact us at 971-317-6868.