Monday, 15 September 2008

Sex offender alerts plan launched (Sarah's Law)

Full Article:


Under the measures, police will be able to tell families if someone with access to a child has convictions or has been previously suspected of abuse.
The year-long projects will be run in Warwickshire, Cambridgeshire, Cleveland, and Hampshire.
The move comes after a campaign for a US-style "Megan's law" - but the scheme falls short of a "right to know".
Calls for a scheme began after the murder of eight-year-old Sarah Payne by a man already convicted of sex offences.
But some charities have warned the schemes could lead to vigilante attacks, and could drive offenders further underground.
Home Secretary Jacqui Smith hailed the pilots as a "huge step forward" in helping parents to protect their children.
Sarah's mother, Sara Payne, welcomed the pilots, but she said they were only a "first step" in a continuing battle.
Under the pilots, parents, carers and guardians will be able to ask the police for information about people directly involved in their own children's lives.
Scenarios could include a single mother who wants to find out about her new boyfriend; parents with concerns about a neighbour who plays with their children; or perhaps even informal sports coaching beyond schools or recognised organisations.

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