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Proposed Law Seeks to Give Summer Camps Access to the Federal Sex Offender List

September 20, 2016, on Sex Crimes |

Many people who are charged with sex crimes are rightfully worried about the lasting impact of the charges, as well as the impact a conviction will have on their lives.  A sex crimes charge on your record can affect your life in many ways on an ongoing basis. Because of the substantial affect that this type of criminal record and required registration as a sex offender can have on your future, it is important to be proactive in trying to defend yourself from serious allegations.

A Look at the Proposed Law

The sex offender list is used for many different things, such as determining where you can live and work and what recreational activities you can participate in.  That said, a law has now been introduced called the Child Protection Improvement and Electronic Life and Safety Security Systems Act, which would make it easier for summer camps to determine if someone is a sex offender or not.

Parent Herald reports on the new proposed bill, which has been introduced by Senator Chuck Schumer of New York. The bill would allow summer camps to have access to the FBI's sex offender registry.  Schumer indicates that the bill is necessary because “right now, there is a serious gap in federal law that is making it harder for summer camps, daycares and other child-serving organizations to fully screen their paid and volunteer applicants.”

The “gap” that Schumer refers to is the fact that summer camps and many other organizations are currently able to do background checks only based on limited records available through the state. If the camps want a more comprehensive background check performed on potential employees or volunteers, they have no choice but to pay a large amount of money for a private background check. Hiring a private investigator is necessary because there are laws in place on who has the authority to access the FBI's database.

If the bill passed, the camps would be able to pay a very modest sum in order to be able to access the FBI's records on sex offenders and violent criminals.  The American Camping Association has long been lobbying Congress to obtain full and affordable access to the FBI's database to conduct more thorough background checks on people who are hired.

While there is no question that summer camps have a right to screen volunteers and staff, restrictions on access to the FBI information exist for a reason. Information on sex offenders is routinely misused to promote violence or discrimination against people who have been convicted of sex crimes. Making it easier for more people and organizations to access comprehensive data about people throughout the United States could be opening the door to such potential abuse.

Regardless of whether this particular bill passes or not, the fact remains that being on the registry can affect all aspects of your life going forward if you are convicted of a sex crime. Get help from a New York City federal sex crime defense attorney when you are faced with accusations so you can fight for your future. Contact The Law Office of James E. Tyner, PLLC today.

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