International Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology

Abstract: Several states have enacted public policies that prohibit sex offenders who have abused children from living within close proximity to a school, park, day care center, or school bus stop. The purpose of this exploratory study was to describe the impact of residence restrictions on sex offender reintegration and to better understand sex offenders/perceptions of these laws. A survey of 135 sex offenders in Florida was conducted. Most of the molesters who responded to the survey indicated that housing restrictions increased isolation, created financial and emotional stress, and led to decreased stability. Respondents also indicated that they did not perceive residence restrictions as helpful in risk management and, in fact, reported that such restrictions may inadvertently increase triggers for reoffense. Implications for policy and practice are discussed.

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