Today, Restore Georgia, an organization representing the 23,000 citizens on Georgia’s Sexual Offender Registry, mailed a letter to Executive Director J. Terry Norris of the Georgia Sheriffs’ Association, Georgia Bureau of Investigation Director Vic Reynolds, and all 159 Sheriffs across our state urging them to implement strategies to reduce COVID-19 exposure among law enforcement officials and those required to register, as well as their families at home and the broader community.
During the annual registration verification process, people are required to be photographed and fingerprinted in-person. This hands-on registration process places officers at risk by forcing them to place hands on potentially dozens of people each day.
Restore Georgia is calling upon the Sheriffs of all Georgia counties to:
- Suspend in-person registration requirements;
- Waive or suspend enforcement of housing proximity restrictions;
- Waive or suspend arrests and prosecutions for failure-to-comply offenses;
- Suspend fees for registration;
- Suspend in-person address verification.
Sheriffs departments across the State of Georgia should suspend rules and policies that are not essential to public safety or that contribute to the spread of COVID-19. These strategies allow law enforcement, on the front-lines of this catastrophe to dedicate more of their limited resources toward crisis intervention and emergency assistance.