National Association for Rational Sexual Offense Laws
|This article is part of a series on the|
|Motto||Fighting to restore dignity and constitutional rights to millions|
|Founded at||Boston, Massachusetts|
|Purpose||Civil rights advocacy, Reforming sex offender registry laws|
|Headquarters||Raleigh, North Carolina|
|RSOL, Reform Sex Offender Laws|
The National Association for Rational Sexual Offense Laws (NARSOL) is a national civil rights and justice reform organization headquartered in Raleigh, North Carolina with operations based in Albuquerque, New Mexico and with affiliated organizations, advocates, and contacts in the vast majority of states. NARSOL and its affiliates are part of the growing movement to reform sex offender laws in the United States. NARSOL asserts that while sex offender registries in the United States were originally well-intentioned and for the most heinous and dangerous sex offenders only, their reach has exponentially widened to include petty offenses such as teen sexting and consensual relations between young people. NARSOL has generated media attention by arranging national conferences in multiple cities including Albuquerque, Los Angeles Dallas, and Atlanta, and by being involved in numerous lawsuits.
While NARSOL believes that offenders should be held accountable in court of law, it criticizes current sex offender registry laws in the United States. NARSOL asserts that current sex offender laws are not based on scientific evidence. These claims are supported by scientific research, and professional organizations such as Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers have presented similar critiques.
NARSOL is an advocacy organization, not a support organization. Additionally, NARSOL is not a legal organization and is unable to provide legal advice or help with individual legal cases or issues. NARSOL encourages the development of Fearless Groups, which are support groups. More information about the Fearless Groups is available on NARSOLs website under the Resources menu. NARSOL will attempt to connect individuals with questions about registry issues with a state affiliated organization. State affiliated organizations are listed, along with contact information, on NARSOL's website under the About Us menu. These organizations may be contacted directly. A state group or contact person is better suited to answer state specific, registry-related questions. NARSOL may be contacted at 888.997.7765 or by email through its website.
NARSOL's former Californian chapter, CA RSOL, challenged ordinances governing registered sex offenders in federal court across the state of California. During 2014 over 20 municipalities were sued by CA RSOL. As of October 11, 15 of the lawsuits had been settled, 38 cities had avoided litigation by revoking their sex offender ordinances, and 6 cities had chosen to discontinue enforcing the ordinances. At the time, sex offender ordinances were under review in 18 additional cities. These efforts culminated in March 2015 when Supreme Court of California declared residency restrictions unconstitutional citing their unfairness and counterproductive effects. Similar lawsuits by the RSOL's Texas chapter forced some Texas towns to ease their residency restrictions in early 2016.
NARSOL's Maryland chapter, FAIR (Families Advocating Intelligent Registries) has played a significant role in reversing the retroactive application of registry laws in the state of Maryland. They were part of the Amicus Curiae cited in the March 2013 Court of Appeals decision Doe v. DPSCS which declared that Maryland's existing sex offender registry laws are punitive in effect, and therefore could not constitutionally be applied retroactively to persons whose crimes pre-dated registration. This decision was further solidified in 2014 with the "Doe 2" decision. The full impact of these decisions in Maryland is still being affected.
- Arkansas Time After Time
- Florida Action Committee
- Illinois Voices for Reform
- Michigan Citizens for Justice
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