QuickCheck: Was a sex offender village set up in the US? | #childpredator | #kidsaftey | #childsaftey


SEX crimes are grave offences because they violate the victims’ bodily autonomy, possibly inflicting lasting physical, emotional, and psychological harms upon them. In some countries, those convicted are often legally required to maintain a certain distance from communities despite having served their sentences. Recently, a post on Reddit attracted much attention for showing what appears to be a village meant specifically for individuals on the sex offender registry.

Does such a place actually exist?

Verdict:

TRUE

It is called “Miracle Village” and is located amid a huge tract of sugar cane fields in South-East Florida in the US.

It was set up by late local pastor Dick Witherow in 2009 as a haven and rehabilitative space for sex offenders who were struggling to find housing.

Under state laws, these people are banned from being within 1,000ft from places where many children can be found, such as schools, playgrounds and daycare centres.

In some counties, the restrictions are harsher — requiring them to be at least 3,000ft away, making living in most towns and cities virtually impossible.

In some areas, places such as swimming pools, bus stops and libraries are out of bounds too.

At Miracle Village, residents are welcomed at a local church, where anger management and bible study classes are also offered.

They are also required to attend psychological treatment programmes as part of the condition of their probation.

Some offenders have a job in nearby towns.

However, the village does not accept applications to settle from violent and serial offenders, as well as paedophiles.

An intake coordinator is in charge of deliberating on applications and deciding if someone is a good fit for the community.

But not everyone who lives here are sex offenders — some are ordinary folk including children.

Under Florida’s laws, sex offenders may live in a neighbourhood with minors, although they may be banned from having any contact.

Those needing help may call Women’s Aid Organisation (018-988 5058, 03-3000 8858), Telenita Helpline (016-237 4221, 016-237 4221), Malaysian Mental Health Association (03-2780 6803), PT Foundation’s Peer Listening Helpline (03-2787 6005).

References:

1. https://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-23063492

2. https://www.dailystar.co.uk/news/world-news/inside-miracle-village-convicted-sex-27819655

3. https://time.com/3705637/life-inside-a-community-of-sex-offenders/





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