Jul 19

Last Milwaukee Channel 12 did a piece on landlords renting to sex offenders and receiving state checks for the rent.

Our company screening criteria rejects sex offenders, but there is a larger question out there that will someday impact all of us.

So these guys, well usually guys, I think there are a few female teachers on the list as well,  are arrested, sentenced to a specific term, do the time and ….  drum roll please … are released.

Now what?

They have served the sentence.  They have to live somewhere after prison, but where?  The near universal answer is ‘Not, next to me!’

If we (society) do not get out in front of this question I anticipate legislation one of these days that will force rental owners and condo associations to accept sex offenders as well as other dangerous criminals.   Madison/Dane County already have laws that restrict screening for criminal activity, making criminals a protected housing class.  Currently sex offenders are exempt from the Madison ordinance.

In Miami  sex offenders lived in a tent city under the Julia Tuttle Causeway (bridge) between the mainland and South Beach as it was the only place that was far enough away from schools, parks, day cares etc that they could legally live in Miami-Dade County.

The ACLU sued Miami over their ordinance.  The Councilman who created the ordinance banning sex offenders from the county ultimately applied for and received federal stimulus fund money  to house the sex offenders in a trailer park filled with kids at a cost of a $1,000 per month per offender. If you read this and it made no sense then you read it correctly.

The answer?

I’m not smart enough to know the answer, just smart enough to see the question and know that any answer arrived at will put rental owners in a tough spot.

7 Responses to “Housing sex offenders”

  1. Brian says:

    I think the first step is to re-evaluate how we define sex offenders. Too many people assume it’s the creepy guy kidnapping innocent children off the streets but it can be the guy (or gal) that had a sweetheart on the wrong side of age of consent even though ages were pretty close.

    You raise a good question-if not next to me, then where? Reasonable restrictions probably are necessary, but what we have today is a panic in many communities along with witch hunts.

    Incidentally, I think Madison/Dame ordinance was voided last year by the state legislature. But even so, I seem to recall it only impacted crimes past a certain number of years old? Some landlords exclude people to the point of ridiculousness-I’ve heard of people being rejected for over a decade-old minor crime.

  2. JIMMY DAY says:

    I can look at an online map which shows the location of all sex offenders who live near me. Part of the reason is that the recidivism rate is very high among sex offenders. I cannot look on an online map and see where the bank robbers are, the car thieves, and I sure can’t see where the meth labs are. Because of this, no one will want to live near sex offenders. This is not the landlord’s fault.

    Unless landlords are given complete immunity from lawsuits, they should have 100% freedom to utilize whatever criteria they choose, in selecting tenants. All these silly lawsuits do is increase the cost of housing, while dong little or nothing to improve it.

    And that’s my opinion!

    * jimmy in MD

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  4. unknown says:

    i feel like thats not right everybody should be equal the same i’m not saying they wrong but most of these people. that’s called sex offenders not some just had sex with a girl one year younger than them or the same age and they both got charge. but half of the time some are sex offenders who actually touch little girls ,boy that’s just sick …..if they did they time x when they get out how the fuck they suppose to change they life around if they cant get a job , no were to stay and maybe not even go to college i just dont get it. whu all the mfs thats robing ,killing people get away with alot of shit besides finding a job i just feel like they arw people too and that’s whats pisses me off i have a kind heart i just Dont like seeing people going through hard times i don’t if i can help i would oml i would but twh all y’all out there reading never give up PRAY keep trying every time you fall fix yo self and try it again prove these mfs wrong show them you not that person they claim you to be keep fighting for whats wright #wrong is wrong true but everyone makes mistakes

  5. I feel like our legislation and government is bogus as hell. There Always speaking on Change in concerns to our community but there’s NEVER a resolution to anything or anyone that’s low minority. It’s a setup. There are More Middle class High minority class people who are scamming the system and government out of every little thing that they can do and get ; leaving the poor minority without any resources and very little resources to survive on and maintain about things. The government sucks. But It’s OK for them to keep on accepting money from this sex offenders who are on the verge of being homeless IF not homeless about things. Whatever happened to Equality of Humans Rights. Some of YOU legislaturs have been sexually offending people for forever and I Still SEE some of you running for office and haven’t Moved nowhere about things but it’s OK for you to come around and Demand others to leave about things when it ONLY applies unto YOUR Minority about things but YOU have been raping other minorities for centuries and decades and have the audacity to call someone a Sex offender. Look in the mirror man about things. The ones who are Saying they DON’T want NO Sex offender around them are the biggest Sex offender themselves and Trying to cover up their own flaws of things and keep things on the hush So that the Public want be exposed to what their on about things. I say let those people live their lives in the same format that your Trying to live yours about things. Didn’t NO ONE up and make you GOD about things. WHO are you to judge and Try to Control where someone live.

  6. Randy says:

    I am constantly amazed at the biased comments with regards to sex offenders. All ARE NOT ” monsters”. If your honest with yourself i think you would agree that there was a time and or situation that occured in your life which you regret and would want a second oportunity to show that you are and can be an assest to society and not a burden. PEOPLE CAN AND DO CHANGE. We all make mistakes to one degree or another, i think this you would agree. So why not give EVERONE an opportunity, not just a “select few”?I truely believe you would be pleasently surprised. Please comment. I would like to know youd thoughts on this. Thank you

  7. Jon Masters says:

    Late to the party here, but wanted to comment on the post by JimmyDay back in 2013. Jimmy stated “Part of the reason is that the recidivism rate is very high among sex offenders.” That’s actually FALSE. As a group, sex offenders have one of the LOWEST rates of recidivism, hovering between 4-13 percent depending on type of crime and treatment. And that’s not my opinion, that’s statistical evidence from numerous studies done by private and government agencies.

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