Public Notification of High Risk Individuals
When a Saskatchewan police agency believes that a convicted offender is a high risk to re-offend and that the public should be warned about him or her, it may decide to issue a public disclosure. Public disclosures provide the offender's name, a recent photograph and background information. The disclosure encourages members of the public to take reasonable steps to ensure their safety.
1. Alerts of high-risk individuals
Length of Time a Notice Will Remain Public
If a public disclosure has been made by a police service to the general public without reliance upon The Public Disclosure Act application process, the offender's information will remain public until:
- the offender is no longer under court ordered supervision for a prescribed offence;
- has not been convicted of a prescribed offence for twelve (12) months; and
- is not facing any pending charges for a prescribed offence.
2. Important tips you should know
- The majority of women who have been raped know their assailant;
- Approximately 60% of boys and 80% of girls who are sexually victimized are abused by someone known to the child or the child's family;
- Most sex offenders groom their victims prior to any sexual abuse; and
- Many pedophiles seek out mothers of single parent families for the purpose of victimizing their children.
Tips on how to protect yourself
- Walk with your head up. Know who and what surrounds you, both behind and in front of you;
- Make eye contact with others. It lets them know that you know they are there;
- Ask someone to walk with you and avoid walking in deserted places alone;
- Do not walk by yourself and with your headphones on;
- Park in well-lit places;
- Have your keys ready in hand so you can get into your house or vehicle quickly;
- Lock your door when you enter your house or car;
- Always tell someone where you are;
- If you have a cell phone, carry it with you;
- If you are in trouble, yell loudly to attract attention; and
- Fight off your attacker as they may not expect resistance.
Tips on how to protect your children
- Watch out for "grooming techniques" such as offering free babysitting, transportation, money, gifts, etc. Sex offenders are masters of manipulation and while they are grooming the child, they are also grooming the parent;
- In a team or group setting, be suspicious of someone who is focused on providing only your child with that "special attention";
- Ask yourself, "Why is this person volunteering to baby-sit my child, or take them camping, or on an outing alone?";
- Ask yourself, "Where did my child get this money or expensive gift?"; "Who gave it to them and why?";
- Parents should be concerned about the adult who relates better with children than he or she does with adults. Especially if that adult has toys and video games at his or her home but they have no children of their own;
- Don't just talk to your kids about stranger danger. A child is many more times likely to be victimized by someone they know than by a stranger; and
- The single most effective means of protecting your child is communicating with them. They have to feel comfortable discussing sensitive matters with you. If they don't feel they can talk to you about their true feelings or that they will be "put down" for it, then you can't expect they will tell you when they are put in an uncomfortable situation by a child molester.
Cybertip.ca handles tips from individuals reporting the online sexual exploitation of children through child pornography, luring, children who are prostituted, and child sex-tourism. If a parent or child comes across information about the online sexual exploitation of a child the parent or child fills out an online report form. The form is reviewed by a trained analyst who then forwards the report, if appropriate, to the proper law enforcement jurisdiction. The site also provides the public with information and other resources to help Canadians keep themselves and their families safe while on the internet.
3. Role of the Public Disclosure Committee
The Public Disclosure Committee is made up of people representing a broad spectrum of the community. They include members of the:
- senior police officers;
- members of the legal profession;
- people who work with victims of crime; and
- those who work with traditional First Nations healing approaches.
The public disclosure process works by police bringing applications forward respecting people who have been convicted of certain scheduled offences and who pose a risk of serious harm to members of a community in Saskatchewan. The scheduled offences include:
- sexual offences against children;
- sexual assaults;
- other sexual offences like bestiality and indecent acts;
- procuring children into prostitution;
- serious personal injury offences like robbery;
- aggravated assault and kidnapping; and
- trafficking in controlled drugs and substances.
How and when information is disclosed
The Committee can only recommend disclosure when the individual poses a significant risk of serious harm to other persons. The disclosure will assist in avoiding the risk posed by the individual, and the public interest in the disclosure outweighs the privacy interests of the individual. If the release of information is recommended, the Committee will also recommend what information should be released, how it should be released, and to whom.
Decisions of the Committee are carefully considered and based on review of information prescribed by the Act. This information includes risk assessments, criminal records, likely destinations for the individual, descriptions of the offences committed, and reasons the individual is believed to pose a significant risk of harm to others.
Individuals who are the subject of an application to the Public Disclosure Committee are advised in advance that an application has been made, and are afforded the opportunity to make submissions to the Committee in writing or on audio or video tape.
The advice given by the Committee does not bind the police agency making the request.