Federal data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) show that 78% of the total population in the United States have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. That indicates that perhaps over fifty million American adults are unvaccinated.
But what about the number of registrants who are eligible to be removed from the North Carolina sex offender registry? Initial data show that 41% of Tier 1 (lowest risk) registrants are eligible to petition for removal. Remarkably, initial data indicates a significant number of North Carolina registrants reaching eighteen years or longer of compliance without one attempt at deregistration.
What are the similarities between COVID vaccinations and petition removals? They are both free and could save lives allowing reintegration into society without the need to mask. Even if you miss a year, there is an opportunity to utilize either later down the road.
The current cost to file a petition with a county clerk for sex offense removal in North Carolina is zero. That is a bargain compared to South Carolina’s $250 and Virginia’s $86 removal fees (excluding the required fingerprint fees).
While there is high speculation that this will be the final round of free COVID vaccinations, the same could be said for a free registry petition. The new eCourts will go live soon all across North Carolina. It is an expensive endeavor that is free for now but eventually will require additional funding to maintain and sustain. Only time will tell.
The bottom line is that there are opportunities at no cost readily available to the public that often is dismissive by the people who need them the most. Every legislative body in the nation is politically quiet without rattling a cage to develop austerity schemes in the form of cuts or cost-associated services. Eventually, America must begin recouping the money it spent on COVID in addition to the billions of dollars on other programs created. The public registry is no stranger and eventually will become a rallying point that fees must be assessed to become sustainable. If a person qualifies to petition for registry removal, then it may behoove them to do so quickly before it becomes a costly endeavor.