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News Link • Sexuality: Sex and the Law

Sex offenders sue over ordinances that ban them from places

In 2006, state voters approved Jessica's Law, which bars sex offenders from living within 2,000 feet of a school or park.

Shortly after, numerous cities adopted much more restrictive local laws that prohibit sex offenders from being present in any "children's facility," such as a public library, school bus stop, or "any location that facilitates on their property classes or group activities for children."

"We believe it is a misguided and unconstitutional effort to do that," said Santa Maria attorney Janice Bellucci, president of California Reform Sex Offender Laws.

Bellucci said the group was created to give a voice to registered sex offenders.

In addition to Wasco and Taft, Shafter, Delano, Tehachapi and California City also passed similar sex offender ordinances. So far, Wasco and Taft are the only two cities in Kern County served with a lawsuit by the civil rights group.

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