Published June, 2021

Letter to American Law Institute on Model Penal Code: Sexual Assault and Related Offenses, The Center for HIV Law and Policy (2021)

The following letter was sent to the American Law Institute (ALI) asking their members to reconsider the release of a draft Model Penal Code (MPC) containing, for the first time, their recommended provisions for a sex offense registry. ALI's release of this draft MPC provision on a sex offense registry would set back current advocacy to end irrational sex offense laws and lists by effectively stating it is possible to "reform" the registry. This advocacy letter does not ask ALI to take any particular position; it asks them to NOT take a position that discourages a more comprehensive examination of the impact and harms of all aspects of the registry. 

The letter was drafted by Bill Dobbs, publisher of The Dobbs Wire, and CHLP's Executive Director Catherine Hanssens. It was endorsed by 50+ organizations and individuals and sent to ALI membership in advance of their meeting in early June 2021. It succeeds a previous version of this letter sent to ALI in January 2021. At that time, The National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL) drafted a similar statement, calling on ALI to "support the complete abolition of sex offender registries and the attendant collateral consequences that often accompany such schemes."