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Norwalk Repeals Residency Restrictions

The Norwalk City Council unanimously agreed to repeal the city’s residency restrictions during its meeting on November 1. The repeal will take effect 30 days after that vote.

In considering what action to take, the Norwalk City Council noted that studies and reports “suggest that blanket enforcement of residency restrictions have not improved public safety”. The Council also noted that “residency restrictions have the unintended consequence of increasing homelessness among registered sex offenders, thereby actually threatening public safety.”

“The Norwalk City Council is to be commended not only for its decision to eliminate residency restrictions, but also for the reasons it did so,” stated ACSOL president Janice Bellucci.

The City Council also relied upon multiple studies, including recent studies issued by the California Sex Offender Management Board and California Department of Justice to reach its decision. In one of those studies, the agency determined that the transient status of registrants is “associated with higher recidivism rates”.

Finally, the City Council cited two recent state court decisions, In re Taylor and People v. Lynch, as additional reasons to repeal the city’s residency restrictions. In the Taylor case, the California Supreme Court found that blanket enforcement of residency restrictions “greatly increased homelessness”. In the Lynch decision, a Court of Appeal determined that Jessica’s Law applied only to parolees, however, the Norwalk residency restrictions applied to all registrants regardless of whether or not the registrant was on parole or probation.

Join the discussion

  1. Nicholas Maietta

    Awesome! Teaching politicians about civil rights one city at a time. Good work.

  2. Timmr

    The good part is they backed up their decision with relevant studies and good judgement, which means they think the restrictions really are bad policy. They could have just said they are doing it to avoid the consequenses of a lawsuit, in other words saying they repeal only under duress. Important distinction.

  3. Brubaker

    Norwalk…this city of Norwalk, California stands as a beacon of light for all cities in America to really put some effort in understanding what a public policy does and really the history on this type of treatment on people. History shows its inhumane.
    That’s why Norwalk can be that beacon for the better of ALL.

  4. Roger

    Another success of Janice and ACSOL members spreading the word!

  5. Rick

    While it’s nice they seem to recognize studies and cute germaine ideas of public safety and homelessness. One important issue seems to be entirely missing. The persons they imposed the restrictions upon are U.S. Citizens, meaning they have no legal right to impose restrictions against them of any kind once their term of punishment is served or being served. You do not lose your citizenship simply because you are incarcerated or in custody to the public. Restrictions are imposed by parole or probation authority.

    U.S. Citizens are free to live, work, attend school, and do any other form of expression free of restrictions, PERIOD.

    But I guess U.S Citizenship is meaningless in this nation now.

    • Chris F

      Funny how a child rapist murderer from another country that makes it here won’t have any restrictions as long as they don’t get deported, but our own citizens are subject to sub-human treatment.

      • John

        Your comment makes no sense. The US doesn’t allow anyone into the country legally if they have a significant criminal record. If they somehow did make it in legally, sex offender registries certainly do apply to them.

        If what you’re suggesting is that illegal immigrant sex offenders aren’t subject to the rules since they don’t register… well, and American citizen doesn’t have to register either if he’s willing to live with the risk of being caught.

  6. Davidh

    repealed for all the right reasons. The success is all the greater when they rely upon facts and make earnest decisions based upon those facts!

  7. David

    Another achievement for ACSOL, another win for Janice, greater awareness of Constitutionally-supported civil rights for Registrants.

  8. Linda Burd

    Thank you, Janet, for all your work and your commitment to justice. Finally woke up today to good news. Hope this is a chink in the wall across the country. Atticus would be proud of you!

  9. C L A R K

    Its a great HomeRun.
    A HomeRun for All.
    The policy makers Norwalk.. now understand and its that understanding must be for every city state & federal policy toward people.
    And its simple policy makers: “At the lunch break I’d suggest you read the Constitution”.
    Thank you Bobby Kennedy.

  10. Rick

    Hmm, they got rid of it because it causes unintended consequences such as homelessness? What about all of the unintended (really intended) consequences of registries, like murder, discrimination, loss of rights? We just don’t want you to be homeless so we can find you. Wow, such logic and reasoning applied here they must be graduates of Harvard. You have to admit, they will do anything to get you exposed.

  11. ocguy

    How long has it been since the Taylor decision? Must be well over a year. Those ordinances still exist? Who knew?

    Congratulations and thank you.

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