Below is a summary – prepared by ACLU of Rhode Island volunteer attorney Lynette Labinger – of today’s court conference before Judge William Smith in the ACLU’s challenge to the state law which caps the number of registered sex offenders (RSOs) that can stay at Harrington Hall at 10 percent of the shelter’s population.
“Counsel for the parties met with Judge Smith today. After a lengthy discussion, the Court acknowledged that there are significant legal and factual issues which the State has not yet had an opportunity to address. It was also acknowledged that Crossroads has not been turning anyone away since the law took effect and the parties agreed that while they are developing the legal issues, no one would be turned away and that we could publicly communicate that understanding. We are next scheduled to meet with the court on January 16, in order to give the State time to prepare its legal arguments, and in the meantime the State understands that Crossroads will not turn anyone away on the basis of the 10 percent cap and that there will be no repercussions for doing so.”