Weekly Update #240
Dear Members and Advocates,
Yesterday, FAC submitted a Complaint to the United Nations Human Rights Council against the United States’ public sex offender registry. It asked the High Commissioner of Human Rights of the UN to investigate the registry for human rights violations.
The UN’s Human Rights Complaint procedure addresses complaints from individuals or groups who are victims of human rights violations. FAC believes that the public sex offender registry is cruel and degrading, which constitutes a violation. In this process, the UN performs an initial screening and will advise us of any deficiencies in the complaint or additional information it may require. The complaint will then go to a work group who will perform the investigation. Most likely, they will send a request for information to the United States, who will then have three months to reply. A report to the UN Human Rights Council will then be prepared. We supplemented the Complaint with our change.org petition (which has more than 3000 signatures) and we hope that other affiliates will support our Complaint with letters or additional information they feel is important. It is not mandatory, but it can’t hurt.
Many of you are wondering what the UN can possibly do for us, and that question is a valid one. The truth is, the UN can’t force the United States to do anything. The UN can act as a mediator between its members and the UN can make recommendations to its members, but unlike a court of law, the United Nations can’t order a member to do or not do something. While the UN has the power to recommend sanctions and will usually come up with some draft resolution or decision on the situation referred to in the complaint, we are not counting on this effort being the single instrument that will take down the registry. It won’t. What we are hoping for is that it will be another weapon in our battle and one that should hopefully bring international attention to this crisis.
A finding, recommendation or even the suggestion that the United States has gone too far with this registry scheme, can be extremely helpful in pending lawsuits domestically. Internationally it can also help registrants who determine they’ve had enough and decide to seek asylum in another country. Unfortunately, at least in Florida, the registry has only gone in one direction and that has been harsher and more punitive, so thinking outside the box and searching for solutions abroad might be something some of us will need to explore sooner than later if we want our families to live a life free of perpetual ostracism and never knowing what new, more punitive law will be passed next year.
There is no portal through which someone can track the process of the complaint and according to information published online, the process can take 24 months in some cases. FAC will keep our members (and anyone reading our forum or receiving our weekly updates) apprised each step of the way. Currently the only update is that a digital copy has been emailed and a hard copy has been sent to Switzerland via Registered mail. You can continue to do your part by asking people to sign the petition, because the more signatures we have, the more persuasive it will be.
On a completely separate note, last week a member brought another matter to our attention. A detective in Highlands County, Detective Ramos, has been overly aggressive in pursuing registrants, even to the extent of coming up with his own rules for registry compliance and enforcing them as if they were laws. He recently took it upon himself to review the registration history of someone that established a temporary residence in Highland County over dozens of registrations over years past, and charged him alleged registration violations relating to instances where he was registering in another County! The case is currently being litigated so we are unable to comment on it, but we look forward to the resolution so that we can share more.
The County is aware of his shenanigans and appears OK with it. Offender Watch, the technology licensed by the FDLE, gave this guy an award last year, for implementing “policies and procedures well above the ordinary minimum requirements set forth by state laws so as to ensure the law enforcement community and citizens are made aware of offender movements, status and risks.” Essentially, it’s no different than getting pulled over for speeding and the officer telling you the speed limit is not what’s posted, but whatever he wants it to be.
If you live in Highlands County or have had experiences with this Detective, please let FAC know. There is also a Meet and Greet scheduled in Sebring this Sat Nov 19 from 11am-2pm. Meet with your local FAC team and an FAC Board representative in person. For location, RSVP to Morris at [email protected] or text 863-256-3026.
In case you’ve not noticed, we (FAC members) have really been standing up for ourselves lately! When more members are finding their voices, it makes a difference and we are not stopping!
The Florida Action Committee
ANNOUNCEMENTS – MARK YOUR CALENDARS
Next Monthly Membership Meeting – Thursday December 1 at 8pm ET. Call 319-527-3487. Topic: TBD. Trouble connecting? Text CALL ME to 319-527-3487 to received a call back and be connected to the meeting.
Next New Membership Orientation Meeting- Thursday December 8 at 8pm ET. Call 319-527-3487. No agenda. Call in to ask about resources, the organization, volunteer opportunities, or anything on your mind. Trouble connecting? Text CALL ME to 319-527-3487 to received a call back and be connected to the meeting.
See Calendar of Events – Keep up with Meet-and-Greets in your area, Support groups, Membership Calls, and other events. For questions and more information contact the Membership Team; [email protected] or call 833-273-7325,Option 1.
Click Here for Calendar, and double click on the event to view details and RSVP instructions. Just some of the upcoming events below.
Sat Nov 19 – Meet and Greet in Sebring from 11am-2pm. For location RSVP to Morris at [email protected] or text 863-256-3026.
Sat Nov 19 – Meet and Greet in Tampa from 2-4pm. For Location RSVP to Daphne at [email protected] or text 757-570-2060.
Sat Dec 3 – Holiday Party and Luncheon in Apopka from 11am-4pm. Italian Buffet served from noon-3pm. Come early and stay as long as you want to mingle, play music, and be entertained. For location RSVP to Anita at [email protected] or text 904-452-8322.
Sat Dec 10 – Holiday Luncheon in Lee County. For Location RSVP to Olivia at [email protected] or text/call 941-315-7914
Become a County Coordinator. The only requirement is your desire to HELP us organize your county. If you are interested in joining the County Coordinator Team, leave message at 833-273-7325, Option 1, or email [email protected]
Letter-Writing Campaigns – If you would like to participate in sending educational information to specific decision makers in Florida, please contact [email protected]. Volunteers must be willing to proudly identify themselves by using their own name and return address on the letters.
SOME HEADLINES FROM THE WEEK
UPDATED (2): FAC Petition for UN to investigate sex offender registry as human rights violation breaks 3,000 signatures!
The Florida Action Committee’s change.org petition asking the High Commissioner for Human Rights for the United Nations to declare the public sex offender registry a human rights violation has collected more than 3,000 signatures! We are so happy with the response the…
Gainesville – Final reading of Amended SORR scheduled. Please leave your comments (to the amendment).
Thanks to Kyle M: The time has come! The Gainesville City Commissioners will be meeting this Thursday November 17, 2022, for the second reading of the amended ordinance. Please click the link below to leave a public comment in support of the amendment. The agenda item…
Please reply with your response and the County (Florida only) in which this applies. When you report to the DHSMV (Driver’s license office) to notify of temporary (3 days in the aggregate) or permanent (3 consecutive days) address changes within Florida, (1) Do they…
They came with cutesy names, such as “Operation Boo” or “Operation Watchful Eye”. They are sex offender compliance checks and multiple times per year, particularly around Halloween, law enforcement officers, usually in teams of half a dozen officers from different…
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Florida Action Committee