As registrants, we know how difficult it is to find employment. Irrespective of how educated, professional or qualified you are, the scarlet letter infects you, your family, your friends, your employer.
There are kind-hearted people out there who are willing to give someone a second chance and help them support their families and themselves. In exchange they get a hard-working, dedicated, loyal employee, who will value their job more than you can imagine.
Then, along comes WKMG, Channel 6 in Orlando, and puts out a shaming piece to induce local employers to fire employees who are registrants.
This story (click here for story) begins, “Mary Clancy frequently orders pizzas from Hungry Howies, and particularly liked one deliveryman, Charles XXXXX, who had recently been bringing the food to her front door... He seems like such a nice guy,” said Clancy, who was impressed by XXXX’s politeness and prompt service.” and ends with the registrant being fired from a job he was apparently doing “promptly, politely and impressively”.
The same happened to the other registrant featured in the story, who worked for a local Pizza Hut. Irrespective of how good of a job he was doing and the fact that his employer was fully aware of his history, he was fired when Channel 6 exposed his status.
Local 6 reporter Mike DeForrest filed a freedom of information request with the FDLE to obtain the employment information of registrants in the area and set out to expose them and get them fired. His report failed to establish whether there had been any complaints about these registrants or whether Orlando has experienced a rash of assaults from Pizza Hut employees, delivery persons, plumbers or locksmiths. They even reported that they found an offender working as a car salesperson but failed to identify any children (or adults, for that matter) who were sexually assaulted on test drives.
Ironically, Click Orlando reports in a separate story today that the Casselberry Police Chief resigned after several women claimed he had sexually harassed them (click here for story). Can you imagine how lucky the public is that Chief Bill McNeil was in charge of the police department and not the local KFC?!?
Which leads us to Click Orlando’s follow up story; “Where Should Sex Predators Work?” (click here for story). Apparently they can work at the Casselberry Police Department, because that’s where you’ll find sexual assaults taking place.
Here’s the point… over 90% of sex offenses are committed by first time offenders, so in reality anyone that comes to your door is a risk, including the police. Parents or anyone vulnerable need to be extremely vigilant about anyone they encounter, at their home, at a park or anywhere! Parents should not bring their children to a dealership to take a test drive with a sex offender, but why would a parent let their child take a test drive alone with ANYONE?
There are some common sense answers to the question; “Where Should Sex Predators Work?”, like not as a school teacher, day care worker or boy scout troop leader, but if you extend the line to fast food restaurants or landscapers; realistically you leave no options for registrants and you make it impossible for them to support themselves or their families, forcing them to commit other crimes, like theft or drug dealing, because that’s their ONLY option.
FAC recently reported on a town in Massachusetts that fired a garbageman because it was discovered he was a registrant! (click here for story) and a Rhode Island bill that penalized employers from hiring registrants. Come on!
The real shame should not be on the head of the registrants who were working hard, doing a good job and trying to live a law abiding life to support their families. The shame should not be on the head of the business owners, who were willing to give a human being a second chance… good for them! The shame should be on vigilante reporter Mike DeForrest and Click Orlando for creating hysteria where it didn’t exist and leaving at least two families without an income tonight.