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January 2007 - Theme: Laws 

Introduction 
     How laws come into being 
     How a conviction came into being 
Links 
Artcles about Megan's Law (USA) 
About the Adam Wash Act (USA)  
About Jessica's Law, housing or residence laws & "proposition 83" (USA) 
     ... and the Sexual Predators Act of 1 January 2007
COPA, the Child Online Protection Act (USA) 
Nicole's Law 
No spanking bill (USA) 
Canada 
Mexico 
UK: Laws and law proposals 
Germany: Law proposals 
Documentation List 

Introduction

More and more states have created laws, said "to protect children", but actually to control, criminalize, demonize and to ban who are called "sex offenders", a great category of convicted people, ranging from tiny breaks of a law onto serious offences. Remarkably enough, there are no such laws for murderers, only for "sex offenders". 

There are so many countries, states and laws, that a complete overview is impossible. What Ipce tries to overview is the trend to make such laws, the global content of the laws, and the critics published to combat such laws that harm lots of people and factually do not protect any child at all. 

The articles below, ordered chronologically, describe the trends and the critics in general, the list of documents refers to more specific information about states and court cases. 

How laws come into being

Laws arise out of political discussion. Reasonable discussion? That's the question. Here below, we present: 

Gonzales, Alberto, Prepared Remarks of Attorney General Alberto Gonzales at the Project Safe Childhood Conference; Justice Department, US Newswire, December 4, 2006 

These 'remarks' are a long speech, showing the way the Attroney General wants to win his audience for more and more severe laws. It is far from rational, it is pure ideolgy and rhetoric. It might be a challenge to analyze this speech. 

The speech is full of terms like "battle", "our artillery", "victory", "zero-tolerance", "innocence" and "God", a battle to "protect our children from these cowardly villains, who hide in the shadows of the Internet." 

"We need to get pedophiles and predators off the street." 
"We need to keep the pedophiles and predators behind bars."
"... mentally abnormal or disordered sex offenders who would pose a serious danger to others if released" 

Very selecive examples as "the rape of a three-year-old" are presented as typical. 

"I look forward to meeting with you on that day [... ...] when we never hear from the people who brag on the Internet about being revolutionaries, fighting for the so-called "sexual rights of children" - as though they are doing kids a favor by sexually molesting and exploiting them. I want these pedophiles off the streets. 
I want them put away for as long as the law will allow. And I want society to act as one united front against this threat." 

How a conviction came into being 

If there is a law and an accusation, a conviction might follow. Reasonable? That's the question. Here below we present an analysis of such a conviction: 

Brasier, L.L., John Wisely and Suzette Hackney, Free Press Staff Writers, 
Anatomy of a Conviction
; In a teacher's child-sex case, legal and child psychology experts question what the prosecution did and the defense didn't. The next call is the judge's; Free Press, December 22, 2006 
As an Oakland County judge ponders the fate of a kindergarten teacher found guilty of molesting two boys, legal experts and child behavior specialists say the case raises serious questions about the process that led to his conviction. [..] 
Even Kenneth Lanning, a retired FBI behavioral analyst who spent much of his 33-year career at the bureau studying people who prey on children, said [...] "It seems here they are saying a 'groomer' suddenly became a 'snatcher.' That's not consistent with the patterns we know. It appears that what you have being put forth in this case is the urban legend of what people think of when it comes to child molesters: some creepy guy leaping out of a dark corner."

Links 

Blog: < * http://sexoffenderissues.blogspot.com/ >

Artcles about Megan's Law (USA) 

Megan's Law says that a convicted sex offender must be mentioned, with name, address, and more, in a sex offender registry which may be public. 

The law was named for Megan Kanka, the 7-year-old New Jersey girl who was raped and killed in 1994 by a twice-convicted sex offender who lived across the street. 

For an overview of the key provisions, see "Key Provisions of new California law", Aug 2006

Blackwell, Richard, Should public get open access to private details of sex offenders? The Globe & Mail, 18 April 2006
The shooting of two men who were listed on a sex offender registry in the United States underlines the hazards of giving the public open access to the kind of information that is carefully kept secret in Canada. 

The Globe & Mail, The Risk of Registries; 19 April 2006 
Sex offender registries were introduced in the United States to protect victims from predators. Instead, they have succeeded in turning predators into victims. The most recent example is the murder of two sex offenders in Maine this week. 

Crary, David, Rethinking Sex Offender Laws a Tough Sell The Associated Press, April 19 2006 
The killings of two men listed on Maine's Internet sex offender registry may offer a grim lesson about the consequences of such registry laws, but defense lawyers and crime researchers question whether a thoughtful national debate on the subject is possible.

Kesich, Greorgy D., Killings rekindle vigilante debate; Portland Press Herald, April 19, 2006
The shooting deaths of two men listed on Maine's online sex offender registry have rekindled debate over the value of such information and the pitfalls that can accompany it. 

Salscheider, Angela, Labeled for Life; Angela Salscheider, wsaw.com, May 2006 
With Web sites that allow you to track where sex offenders live, many of you are now aware some live right in your own neighborhood. That knowledge is putting a new kind of pressure on people to keep themselves and their kids safe, but what you may not know is how this also affects the offenders and their families.

Wilson, Dan, Judge takes stand against sex offender registry; Waupaca case raises underage-consent issue; Post-Crescent, May 4, 2006 
A Waupaca County judge has ordered convicted sex offender Sam Roloff's name to be added to the state's sex offender registry, but not until nearly 100 years have passed
Circuit Judge Philip Kirk said the list, which now numbers more than 18,000 people, is rendered useless when it includes people like Roloff who engaged in consensual sex with underage parties. 

BBC News, Reid warned against Megan's Law [in UK]; 19 June 2006
John Reid has been warned against rushing to introduce a wholesale version of the Megan's Law system that deals with child sex offenders. Ex-chief constable Paul Whitehouse says the move could divert attention from people who pose an even greater risk.

Boston News, Panel to mull changes in online sex-offender list; July 23, 2006 
Spurred by the Easter Sunday murders of two men who were listed on Maine's online registry of convicted sex offenders, a legislative panel Wednesday begins a study of potential changes to the list. At issue will be whether to provide details of the offenses and focus only on the most dangerous offenders who are seen as the most likely to commit new crimes. 
"Right now, the registry has pretty much grouped everybody into one category, [...] You get the 20-year-old there because of an improper relationship with a 15-year-old, and you have the other case, a 50-year-old man and a 2-year-old baby."

Dickerson, Brian, Fearmongers still feed on sex offender anxiety; Free Press, August 14, 2006 
Michigan's online sex-offender registry is a grab bag of 39,000 residents prosecuted for everything from teenage promiscuity to violent sexual assault. [...]
The newest outbreak occurred last week in Warren, where City Council members directed their staff to draft an ordinance barring anyone on Michigan's sex-offender registry from the city's 20 public parks and two community recreation centers. 

Harper, David, Sex offenders challenge laws concerning where they may live; Tulsa World, September 2, 2006 
A group of anonymous Tulsa County sex offenders who are represented by an ACLU attorney filed a lawsuit in Tulsa federal court Friday challenging Oklahoma laws dealing with where they may live. The lawsuit, which seeks class-action status, claims that hundreds of people on Oklahoma's sex-offender registry are being forced to move from their homes, leave their jobs and stop attending their churches as a result of recently enacted state laws. 

Victim's Mother Ask For Registry Changes; wmtw.com, September 13, 2006 
The mother of one of the two men allegedly killed last Easter by a Canadian who sought out sex offenders on the Internet was among those asking Maine legislators on Tuesday to change the state's sex-offender registry. [...] Turner said her son didn't belong on the list, because he was not a dangerous pedophile. She said he was 19 when he had consensual sex with his girlfriend two weeks before her 16th birthday. 

Bain, Brandon, Sex Offenders - where they live; Downside of registries: harassment, vigilantism;  Newsday, October 23, 2006 
State sex offender registries were established beginning 10 years ago to allow residents to locate sex offenders in their neighborhoods. But some experts worry the registries also allow those who loathe the presence of sex offenders to take matters into their own hands. 

[About:] Schultz, Pamela D. 
Schultz speaks out on sexual offender policies
; Author & source unknown; dated December 1, 2006 
Dr. Pamela D. Schultz, associate professor of communications at Alfred University, presented two papers at the annual meeting of the National Communication Association in San Antonio, TX, in November. 
"In the United States, concern over child molestation and child molesters has attained the status of moral panic." 
"The rhetorical constructions of child molesters have inspired politically expedient but ultimately ineffective and potentially even dangerous means of combating the crime, such as Megan's Law." 

Agro, Brittanny & Ruffins, Ebonne, Branded for life; Children's advocates oppose Illinois law requiring juvenile sex offender registry; Medill News Service, 9 December 2006 
While juveniles were responsible for at least 26 percent of all Cook County sex crimes in 2005, a law that requires juvenile offenders to register with local authorities lacks support among children's advocates.

Worden, Amy, Expanded Megan's Law offers wider information to parents; Inquirer Harrisburg Bureau, Dec. 11, 2006 
Under recent changes to Pennsylvania's Megan's Law, the state police Web site provides more information on thousands of registered sex offenders. The site has been updated with the street address, municipality or prison where the registrant lives.  

Hudak, Andy, Low-risk sex offenders should be treated rather than locked up; Andy Hudak, Daily Interlake, Jan 03, 2007 
The actual statistic is a 3.8 percent re-offense rate over three years! This was also across ALL levels of risk. [...] Montana's prison and outpatient programs have consistently
demonstrated recidivism rates of less than 1 percent per year. [...]
Let's support rational laws and interventions that are successful and based on scientific facts -- NOT the part of our brains that think black-and-white, deal with fear through punishment and
repression, and is responsible for much of the prejudice and suffering in the world. 

Ramshaw, Emily, Child sex bills raising concern; Victims' groups think death penalty, other ideas could backfire; The Dallas Morning News, January 4, 2007 
Texas lawmakers who want longer prison terms for sex offenders and possibly even the death penalty for repeat child molesters have run into unlikely opposition from victims' rights organizations and prosecutors. 
Opponents say many of the changes, proposed in bills filed for the upcoming Legislature, actually could make it harder to get convictions in jury trials and give sex offenders greater incentive to kill young victims. 
Other proposals, including increased electronic monitoring and further limits on where sex offenders may live, give the perception of safety but may actually prompt sex offenders to slip below the radar, opponents say.

Citizens Reform Group is an unincorporated nonprofit association (California registration #10030) which promotes and advocates the protection of RSOs (registered sex offenders) civil rights throughout California. We will expand to other states as resources permit.

About the Adam Wash Act or Child Protection and Safety Act

This Act (named for Adam Walsh, who was abducted and murdered in 1981 at 6 years old), would: 

Punish the intentional Internet sale or distribution of "date rape drugs" by making the act a new federal crime with up to 20 years in prison. 
 

Force sex offenders to provide a DNA sample, a requirement that many states already have adopted.
 

Create a national sex offender registry to be run by the FBI, with "relevant information" on each person. It's supposed to permit geographical lookups based on ZIP code.
 

Fund a series of pilot programs, lasting up to three years, to tag sex offenders with tracking devices that would let them be monitored in real time. The devices would include a GPS downlink (to provide exact coordinates), a cellular uplink (to transmit the coordinates
to police), and two-way voice communications.
 

Separately, the Senate is expected to vote this year on a related but broader proposal dealing with Web labeling. That legislation says that Web site operators posting sexually explicit information
must slap warning labels on their pages or face prison terms of up to five years. 
(From: McCullagh, Declan , Congress spanks naughty sex sites; news.com, Jul 26 2006.)

Kellman, Laurie, Senate OKs bill creating national list of predators; Associated Press, July 21, 2006
Legislation designed to help police find more than 100,000 sex offenders; House to consider it next week, Bush likely to sign  Convicted child molesters would be listed on a national Internet database and would face a felony charge for failing to update their whereabouts under a bill the Senate approved Thursday. [And more: sere the article.]

About Jessica's Law, housing or residence laws & "proposition 83" (USA) 

... and the Sexual Predators Act of 1 January 2007

Jessica's Law, proposed by "Proposition 83" (accepted by a majority in an election) prohibits all - minor and major - sexual offenders from living within 2,000 feet of schools, parks or playgrounds; increases sentencing and parole terms; and monitors their whereabouts of for life using satellite tracked, GPS ankle bracelets. 

The law also mandates in a new Sexual Predators Act, that, from January 1, 2007, an adult who has committed any sex crime against a child 14 or younger spend at least 25 years in prison.

Critics say that the law does not protect any child, because most child sexual abuse happens within the family. And sex offenders have low recidivsm rates. The law may severly dostort the life of ex-prisoners and their families. 

In none of the critics we read the thought that an US citizen, to reach a school yard, easily might use a car to overcome the distance. 

Bird, Dr. B. Cayenne, Don't sign Jessica's Law - Political Scam Targets Mentally Ill Prisoners, Families; American Chronicle, January 31, 2006 
One of the worst initiatives ever to go forward in California is the one currently underway entitled "Jessica's Law." It is purely political and will do nothing to reduce the incidence of child molestation even though it will cost us millions in resources should it pass. 
As a mother and grandmother, I am as concerned with protecting our children as everyone else. But I don't like to see mostly young people destroyed for life over accusations that often stem from divorce and child custody disputes. 

Bird, Dr. B. Cayenne, Sex Offender Hysteria Good for Getting Votes and Keeping the Prisons Stocked but not much else; American Chronicle, 11 February 2006 
Sex Offender Laws Endanger Your Teens and Young People much more than they protect them. Even more children will be left at the mercy of a broken foster care system where child molestation happens daily. Often when the politicians try and fix things, other things break - like lives.

Arlidge, Carleen R., President of California Attorneys For Criminal Justice, Statement in opposition to Proposition 83; February 14, 2006. 
This proposition is another Jessica's Law style violent sex offender law. 
Proposition 83 would cost taxpayers an estimated $500 million but will not increase our childrens safety. Instead, by diluting law enforcement resources, the initiative would actually reduce most childrens security while increasing the danger for those most at risk. 

Philips, Jim, Modern-Day Scarlet Letter; Leave the perverts alone; Jim Philips,  WESH.com, June 15, 2006
It's becoming the cause of the week, whether it's catching sexual predators on "Dateline" or putting up signs in the neighborhood to identify your local flasher. I'm starting to wonder what all the fascination is about? [...]
How about watching your children more closely? Keep your eyes open and leave the neon "PERVERT" signs at home. 

Miller, Jill Young, Tougher law for sex offenders under fire; Human rights groups challenge restrictions; The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, 06/20/06 
"Thousands of people on Georgia's sex offender registry will be forced to evacuate their homes, leave their jobs, cease attending church services, and be required, by legislative fiat, to abandon court-mandated treatment programs," the lawsuit says.

Legge, Joe, "I'm Scared "; Sex Offender Fears New Law; WDEF-TV News 12, June 30, 2006 
Thousands of sex offenders living in Georgia may soon be forced to moved. [...] 
He's rebuilt his life... Getting married, buying a house, and landing a good job. Now, John's life stands to be torn apart again, thanks to a new Georgia law. [...]
Georgia will prohibit sex offenders from living, working, and loitering within a thousand feet of anywhere children gather... like a school, church, park, or even a school bus stop. These rules will force thousands of sex offenders to relocate. 

Schneider, Betty, Jessica's Law triggers mess for state; LA Daily News, 12 September 2006 
OVER 70 percent of California voters backed Proposition 83, "Jessica's Law." And, as in Iowa before it, the legislation has engulfed the state in a legal morass. Does it apply retroactively?
Was it framed honestly and precisely? Is it even constitutional?
It's unlikely that most busy citizens who punched "yes" had closely explored Proposition 83's paradoxes and knots. They only saw its bare-bones title, "Sexual Predator Punishment and Control Act" - a red flag raised in the name of kids - and immediately saluted.

Schultz, E.J., Jessica's Law comes to California; Some worry ballot initiative would bring sex offenders to the Valley; Bee Capitol Bureau, 10/23/06 
If the proposition passes, California would become the 26th state to enact a version of Jessica's Law, named for Jessica Lunsford, a 9-year-old Florida girl who was murdered last year by a convicted sex offender.
If the measure passes -- and polls indicate it will -- registered sex offenders would be prohibited from living within 2,000 feet of any school or park. Large parts of urban Los Angeles and San Francisco would be off limits -- but not big chunks of the wide-open San Joaquin Valley. 

Warren, Jennifer, Living with sex offender housing laws; Los Angeles Times, November 1, 2006 
"Probation and parole supervisors cannot effectively monitor . . . offenders who are living under bridges, in parking lots, in tents at parks or at interstate truck stops,". 
Despite such concerns, Iowa's Legislature has declined to overhaul the law. One member, Republican Sen. Larry McKibben, acknowledged that "things may not be working the way we'd hoped." But in an election year, he said, legislators would not support anything "making life easier for these pariahs."
Iowa is among about 20 states and hundreds of communities that have adopted rules governing where released sex felons may live. 

Kravets, David, Sex offender Proposition 83 blocked in court; David Kravets, Associated Press, Nov. 08, 2006 
A federal judge on Wednesday blocked enforcement of Proposition 83, the ballot measure passed overwhelmingly by voters a day earlier that's meant to crack down on sex offenders, including
limiting where they may live. 
U.S. District Judge Susan Illston, ruling on a lawsuit filed here early Wednesday, said the measure "is punitive by design and effect" and likely unconstitutional. 
The so-called Jessica's Law prohibits registered sex offenders from living within 2,000 feet of a school or park - effectively prohibiting parolees from living in many of California's cities. 

Associated Press, Ruling won't damage sex offender law; 9 November 2006 
Supporters of a ballot initiative that slaps tough restrictions on paroled sex offenders say a judge's ruling against parts of it won't dilute its effectiveness. 
A federal judge on Wednesday blocked provisions of Proposition 83 prohibiting sex offenders from living within 2,000 feet of schools or parks. The ruling said that and other restrictions in the measure are punitive and cannot be applied retroactively to the state's roughly 90,000 registered sex offenders. Voters overwhelmingly approved the Jessica's Law initiative in Tuesday's election.

Bird, Rev. Dr B. Cayenne, Prop 83 Jessica's Law Was Designed to Overflow Prisons; Director of United for No Injustice, Oppression or Neglect, in: American Chronicle, November 11, 2006
Proposition 83 is simply a bad law, which should have never even been put on the ballot. Voters were misled by a fear-mongering, emotional campaign that amounted to nothing less than a witch hunt, Salem style, and deceived into thinking it would protect children from snatch-and-run predators. It will not. Instead it will unconstitutionally punish many others: mentally ill who could benefit from treatment, eighteen-year-old offenders who had sex with their seventeen-year-old girlfriends, older sex offenders who have served their time, been released from parole, and who have become law abiding citizens with families, jobs and support systems. 

Associated Press, Key Kansas lawmaker: Proposal on sex offenders 'a bad deal'; November 16, 2006 
Proposals for keeping sex offenders from living close to schools or day-care centers may appear attractive politically, but they won't protect children, a key legislator said Thursday.

Thompson, Don, California Narrows Jessica's Law's Reach; Associated Press, November 18, 2006 
County prosecutors and state lawyers on Friday further narrowed their interpretation of a voter-approved crackdown on sexual offenders, saying the initiative's lifetime restrictions
don't apply to criminals who are currently on parole.

Schultz, Pamela D., Treatment for sex offenders can protect community; But the problem of readmitting perpetrators to society will never be solved if we allow misplaced fear and paranoia to guide us; OPINION, By Pamela D. Schultz; Newsday [Melville, NY], December 3, 2006. 
The hunt for released sex offenders, in particular child molesters, has become a moral panic, a mass-mediated wave of irrational public fear. Public policy is based on the idea that child molesters lurk in every neighborhood, playground, schoolyard and public park. [...] 
Child molesters cannot be hiding beneath every rock; there aren't enough of them. 

Smith, Jennifer, Residency laws for sex offenders under microscope; Restrictions aim to prevent repeat crimes, but critics say all laws do is prevent offenders from rebuilding lives; Newsday [Melville, NY], December 3, 2006 
1) Article 
2) Voices in the sex offender debate - Several authors 
3) Pending and and current laws on LI 
Experts in sex-offender treatment and recidivism say there is little proof such measures keep communities safer or prevent sex offenders from striking again. [..] Experts say making it harder for sex offenders to find housing can lead to stress and instability, which can increase the likelihood they will re-offend. 
"Most sex offenders do not re-offend," said Karl Hanson, a senior research officer with Public Safety Canada who studied sex offenders for two decades. 

Give me a break folks; This is totally insane, as are all the other sex offender hysteria laws; The Sun, 24 December 2006 - Author unknown; supposedly comment by a reader. 
If the sex offender laws are kept, why discriminate? If sex offenders must suffer for life and be on GPS, so should ANYONE with a criminal record. If this is not done, then it is discrimination. Anyone with a criminal record should be on a registry on the internet for the whole world to see, and be on GPS for life. 

The Wichita Eagle, Legislature Didn't Get Jessica's Law Right; Editorial, December 26, 2006 
No bill enjoyed more attention, debate and, frankly, grandstanding from the 2006 Legislature than Jessica's Law. [...] That should have meant its problems would be pre-emptively addressed before passage. 

Love, Norma, Sexual predators, living wills among new laws; Associated Press, December 29, 2006 
First-time child molesters could be locked up for a minimum of 25 years in prison -- and potentially indefinitely afterward -- under a tough new law taking effect Jan. 1 [2007]. 

New York Times, Sex Offenders in Exile; Editorial, 30 December 2006 
Of all the places that sexual predators could end up after prison, the worst is out of sight, away from the scrutiny and treatment that could prevent them from committing new crimes. But communities around the country are taking that risk, with zoning laws that banish pedophiles to the literal edges of society. 

McDermott, Kevin, New laws help keep track of sex offenders; QCTimes, January 1, 2007 
As of today, the driver's licenses of registered sex offenders in Illinois will expire every 12 months instead of the usual four years in an effort to better keep track of them. Another new law increases the information sex offenders must provide about themselves when they register and makes that information more readily available to the public. Yet another new law expands the use of electronic monitoring devices for paroled sex offenders. 
[...] Too many laws? [...] "If we passed a law for everything that frustrates us, we'd have 1,000 new laws (starting Jan. 1) instead of 100."  

Green, Aimee, More Walls Await Freed Predators; The Sunday Oregonian (Portland, Oregon)
January 7, 2007 
As post-prison laws get tougher for sex offenders, rehabilitation officials say, the limits may keep many from ever rejoining society. 

COPA, the Child Online Protection Act (USA) 

COPA was signed into law in 1998 after the Supreme Court had struck down the Communications Decency Act, the first major attempt to regulate sexual content on the Internet. Because of the legal
challenges, COPA has never been implemented.

The law requires that anyone on the World Wide Web who for commercial purposes deliberately makes available material harmful to minors will be subject to a fine of up to $50,000 and a prison sentence of up to six months, with each day of violation constituting a separate offense. Civil penalties of up to $50,000 for each violation also are allowed.

COPA provides Web site operators offering sexual content with an "affirmative defense" to such penalties: They must restrict minors' access to material considered harmful by requiring "use of a credit card, debit account, adult access code, or adult personal identification number" or other "reasonable measures" to verify users' age.

McMasters, Paul K., Too much sex or too much law? Marion Star, November 24, 2006 
COPA opponents contend that the law is unconstitutionally broad, that it makes online speakers uncertain and fearful, thus chilling protected speech. They say filtering and blocking software are much better tools because much of the sexually explicit material originates outside the United States, while COPA targets only commercial Web sites in the U.S.

Nicole's Law

Brooks Higgins, Candice, Nicole's Law; Law named for West Chester girl toughens penalties for sex crimes; www.journal-news.com, 3 January 2007 
The law [...] will exact tougher penalties and limit bail opportunities for repeat sex offenders accused of victimizing a minor. 

No spanking bill (USA)

We have seen lots of laws here above, some of them prohibiting 'sex offenders' even to live in the neighborhood of children, based on the false belief of high recidivism rates, and neglecting the fact that most, more than 90%, of the sexual abuse of children is not done by strangers, but by parents at home. Psychologists play a crucial role in spreading these false beliefs and hiding the facts. 

Remarkably enough, their is no bill prohibiting parents to spank their children. People arguing for such a bill, notably for children youngter than three years of age, didn't have any success. Here also, psychologists play a crucial role, saying that spanking will not hurt a child. 

Zapler, Mike, No-spank bill on way; MediaNews Sacramento Bureau, Jan. 18, 2007 
Assemblywoman Sally Lieber, D-Mountain View, wants to outlaw spanking children up to 3 years old. If she succeeds, California would become the first state in the nation to explicitly ban parents from smacking their kids. [...]
Experts in child psychology disagree over whether spanking is a legitimate or effective way for parents to discipline their children. Professor Robert Larzelere, who has studied child discipline for 30 years, said his research shows spanking is fine, as long as it's used sparingly and doesn't escalate to abuse. "If it's used in a limited way,'' the Oklahoma State University professor said, "it can be more effective than almost any other type of punishment.'' 

Canada

Canadian Age of Consent Law to Sexual Activity - Explanation. 

Mexico 

Mexico Passes Anti-Child Sex Law; Prensa Latina, December 27, 2006 
The Mexico City Legislature approved an all-embracing campaign on Wednesday against childhood sexual exploitation linked to tourism, a problem that is on the rise nationally and affects at least 5,000 minors in the Federal District.

UK: Laws and law proposals

Berlin, Marcel, A law to vet volunteers who work with children will harm the very people it is designed to protect; Famous people who do good works with children will not be immune. 
TV presenter Johnny Ball says he will refuse to be vetted; The Guardian, October 25, 2006. 
I was not, until Monday, overly concerned with the safeguarding vulnerable groups bill, now going through parliament. I saw it as an excessive over-reaction to a limited problem, but there's a lot of that about, and I would not be writing about it had I not heard someone on the radio defending the proposed law.

Schofield, Kevin, Laws to keep children safe 'getting out of hand'; Scotsman, 16 Nov 2006 
New child-protection laws introduced in the wake of the Soham murders are "creating a climate of social distrust" between adults and young people, according to a parents' group.

Germany - Law proposals 

German Politicians Propose Internet Registry for Sex Offenders; DwWorld, 13 October 2006 
Both liberal and conservative politicians have recommended starting an Internet registry based on
the US model. 

Car Ban Proposed for Convicted Sex Offenders; DwWorld, 17 October 2006 
A senior member of the CDU [Christian Democratic Union] wants to introduce new legislation designed to reduce the number of sex offenses committed in Germany. This would include preventing offenders released from jail from owning a car.

More documentation

Documentation List # E 22a, January 2007

 

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