Sex offenders registry concerns

IF the Sex Offenders Registry Bill is adopted, juveniles who are convicted of sexual related offences will be branded as sex offenders for life.

Fiji Women’s Rights Movement (FWRM) executive director Nalini Singh highlighted this and said they were concerned about juveniles as they would be branded and this would lead to difficulty in terms of leading a normal life.

Making her submission to the parliamentary Standing Committee on Justice, Law and Human Rights on the new Sex Offenders Registry Bill, Ms Singh said careful consideration must be given to juveniles who were found guilty of sexual offences with special measures put in place to address offences based on the age.

She also highlighted that Section 7(3) of the Bill provided that authorised persons from the Fiji Police Force and Fiji Corrections Service would be responsible for the administration of the register of sexual offenders.

Ms Singh said it should be noted that the Fiji Police Force and relevant authorities had not declared statistics around repeated sex offenders.

“FWRM believes that rehabilitation is essential in holistically approaching the issue of eradicating sexual offences from our community and stakeholders must be given paramount attention to preventative measures in addressing the high rate of sexual offences.”