Living with a Label

By Chelsea Deffenbacher, The Register-Guard | January 6, 2019

Stoneleigh Fellow Nicole Pittman shared her expertise with The Register-Guard in a story about the laws in Oregon that can require children to register as sex offenders for life.

Beyond the dollar, there are real consequences for living with the label for the offender and the public.

According to Nicole Pittman, vice president and director of the Center on Youth Registration Reform, children adjudicated for sex crimes and required to register as sex offenders are four times more likely to commit suicide and five times more likely to be approached by an adult for sex. However, they only have a 2 percent rate of reoffending nationwide, she said.

“Placing children on the registry has to stop because it’s child abuse,” Pittman said.

Pittman said she will continue to advocate that no child should ever have to register — in her opinion, younger than 25. And while she said she is in favor of any incremental change, Oregon’s change in law in 2014 is not enough.

“The registry doesn’t work, period,” Pittman said.“We’re failing our children.”

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