Victims’ rights groups and lawmakers yesterday urged the Council of Grand Justices to uphold the involuntary psychiatric treatment of sex offenders as the council is to hand down a ruling on the practice today.
Should the council rule against involuntary treatment, the government would have to set free 68 sex offenders — 57 at the Pei Teh Hospital and 11 at the Tsaotun Pschyatric Center — Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Sandy Yeh (葉毓蘭) told a news conference in Taipei.
Sex offenders have a high recidivism rate and releasing them into society infringes on the public’s right to freedom from fear, she said.
Whatever the council’s decision, the Ministry of Health and Welfare is advised to devise policies in its management of sex offenders that would protect the rights of the public and crime victims, she said.
The ministry should consider using contact tracing technology that is being used during the COVID-19 pandemic in its management of convicts committed to its psychiatric facilities, she added.
KMT Legislator Yang Chiung-ying (楊瓊瓔) said that Taiwan did not invent the involuntary treatment of sex offenders, adding that the European Court of Human Rights has ruled that the practice did not contravene the International Bill of Human Rights.
“The personal freedoms of convicted sex offenders should not be protected at the expense of the victims and the rights of the public,” she said.
Sex offender post-sentence [civil commitment] mandatory therapy ‘mostly constitutional‘: court [focustaiwan.tw – 12/31/20]