As of , 22 states had some form of residency restriction: These laws have come under fire as studies have shown such laws to be ineffective Minnesota Dept.
It should go without saying residency laws restrict the number of available housing. In anticipation of a forced eviction, I began hunting for a new residence beginning in October This is significant because Ohio's residency laws only restrict Registered Sex Offenders RSO from residing within feet from a school.
Of course, even had the ordinance been in place during the time this study was made, it only would have impacted only those residences within the city limits; county and suburb residences would not have been affected. This exercise was not intended to be a "study" per se, but an actual job hunt. However, as the numbers began to pile up, I found it necessary to document and analyze the various responses I received from the many landlords I contacted.
All of the prospects met the following criteria: All of the residences were located in Ohio. All Kentucky and Indiana residences were excluded. Virtually all residences maybe with one or two exceptions; I happened to find my new residence while jogging were found in the Cincinnati Enquirer classified ads. One noticeable but unsurprising pattern is the location of the bulk of potential residences were in lower income neighborhoods such as Avondale or Price Hill, while apartments in more affluent neighborhoods such as Hyde Park were underrepresented in this study.
But first I must ask if you are willing to rent to a registered sex offender? If they do state a reason, mark it down. If they were particularly nasty or rude, note that as well. Reasons can vary; personal, too close to a school, fear of losing tenants or of the notification laws causing trouble are the most common responses. If yes, ask for the address of the apartment. Yes The responses were categorized as follows: This includes people who say yes but do not know if their property meets the residency restrictions of their area.
NCB- This is unreturned messages or numbers that are disconnected or wrong. Of the 71, seven of them would rent to an RSO if not for the residency restrictions or community notification; nine were particularly rude and vulgar to the caller; and the rest gave no particular reason for denial. Of the seven, 3 addresses are confirmed 1. Also included in this statistic were calls in which the listed numbers were wrong numbers, possibly the result of number changes or errors on behalf of the source of the ad, but is statistically insignificant.
However, in the case of left messages, it can be assumed the NCB to imply a no response, though unverified. Even if you added the number of those willing to rent to an RSO and the landlord who stated he would rent to a Tier 1 offender, this number would still be far below the listed number. Of those who refused rental, it is worthy to note the number of landlords openly hostile to the prospect of renting to an RSO slightly exceeded the number who otherwise would be willing to rent to an RSO if not for the law.
Also of great importance was the number of landlords who would not return the calls; please note that the caller identified himself as a sex offender, or, in the case of a female assistant, was calling on behalf of an RSO. The impact of residency laws on available housing is statistically significant. This is important because, "Although these laws were passed as a means to decrease recidivism and promote public safety, the resulting stigmatization of sex offenders is likely to result in disruption of their relationships, loss of or difficulties finding jobs, difficulties finding housing, and decreased psychological well-being, all factors that could increase their risk of recidivism" Hollida Wakefield, "The vilification of sex offenders: Do laws targeting sex offenders increase recidivism and sexual violence?
Science and the Law, , p. Being more a study derived from a necessity rather than from a controlled environment, there was little initial planning regarding methodology and only during the course of this exercise did a certain need for data become evident.
As such there were a few deficiencies in reviewing the available data collected during this exercise. Firstly, this study was limited to the Cincinnati metropolitan area in accordance with a residency rule which has since been expanded to include more restrictive areas. Certainly I would love to see this study replicated under other conditions. In particular, a study should be conducted in states that have not passed residency laws, along with states with stricter residency laws.
Indeed, other states have stricter residency laws than Ohio or even the city of Cincinnati. My theory, based on the available data I have collected from this exercise, obviously states the more restrictive the law, the more negative the impact on the RSO.
And that is a lose-lose situation for everyone. September 26, First Report: December 6, Current version: