The child protection offender register: An analysis of the proposed New Zealand child sex offender register
Sex offender registries are prominent and controversial methods of managing sex offenders once released into the community. The purposes and form of these registers vary between jurisdictions. A current proposal has been made for the development and implementation of such a register in New Zealand which would focus on child sex offenders specifically. In determining whether this intervention would be justified and serve a practical purpose, this paper looks at the risk posed by child sex offenders and the current measures in place to manage this risk. This paper finds that the proposed child sex offender register will enhance the current management measures and information sharing arrangements regarding child sex offenders. Various rights and interests are affected by the implementation of a sex offender registry; the inherent tension being between freedom of expression and privacy. This paper looks at whether the current proposal achieves an appropriate balance between these rights. Whilst an appropriate balance is achieved by the register itself, this balance will have to be more carefully considered in the development of the proposed disclosure scheme.