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International Human Rights Organization Begins Investigation of U.S. Sex Offender Policy

April 2006, < http://www.ethicaltreatment.org/news.htm#hrw  >

Human Rights Watch is the largest international human rights organization in the United States, documenting human rights abuses in every region of the world, publishing in-depth reports on those abuses, and advocating for change. HRW's US Program is currently conducting research about state sex offender registries, specifically focusing on how broad the registries are, and the effect that widespread community notification has on the ability of registered sex offenders (RSOs) to find a place to live free from harassment and acts of vigilantism. To get a sense of the arguments that HRW will be making, see the Op Ed piece that was published in the San Francisco Chronicle in January 2005.

HRW is collecting stories of RSOs who have been targets of community harassment and/or threats of violence, and RSOs who have been turned away from housing because of discrimination by landlords, zoning regulations, or any action taken by local officials (including law enforcement).

The organization is also looking for cases where people have been classified as sex offenders and forced to register because they committed non-violent or consensual acts that are defined under state law as sex offenses.

Those who have experienced such actions are asked to contact

Corinne A. Carey, researcher, US Program, Human Rights Watch, at 212-216-1298, by e-mail at careyc@hrw.org , or by postal mail at Human Rights Watch, 350 Fifth Avenue, 34th Floor, New York, New York 10118.

For more information about Human Rights Watch, readers can visit the HRW website at www.hrw.org
Human Rights Watch is very concerned about the confidentiality and safety of their witnesses. The organization does not use real names in reports, unless cases are widely known to the public or there is some other compelling reason as identified by witnesses.

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