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Proposal to change ‘Sex Offender’ terminology in Colorado, Springs District Attorney testifying against change

According to a draft sent to 11 News from the Sex Offender Advisory Board, it would change the term of ‘sex offender’ to ‘those who have been sexually abusive’.
Published: Nov. 15, 2021 at 6:13 PM MST
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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KKTV) - The Sex Offender Management Board has voted to make changes in their terminology in how they label sex offenders.

According to Board Chair Kimberly Kline, the Board feels the change is needed after seeing a negative trend with rehabilitation for treatment with sex offenders. According to a draft sent to 11 News from the Board, it would change the term of ‘sex offender’ to ‘those who have been sexually abusive’. The Board believes that changing terminology will reduce risks and re-offending.

“Ultimately, it is about risk reduction,” said Kline. “When we are talking about risk reduction, we are talking about reducing recidivism or re-offense. If we are doing that, it is coming from a very victim centered standpoint. I think everybody can get behind that.”

District Attorney Michael Allen of Colorado Springs is against the proposal and believes the language should not be changed. In a press conference today, Allen says that taking away the label of sex offender is taking away from the crime that they committed with the victim.

“Words have meaning and actions have consequences,” said Allen. “Using the term sex offender recognizes the gravity of deviant sexual behavior committed against another person. This propose change diminishes the harm done to victims of sex offenders.”

The Sex Offender Advisory Board is opening up their meeting to the public to discuss the change on Friday. Allen tells 11 News that he will be testifying against the change of language with sex offenders. Allen says that he has not had any victims reach out to him yet about this change in language.

The meeting will be on Friday, November 19th from 9:00am to 4:00pm. This will be a virtual meeting. The link can be found here.

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