Legislation Proposal

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

MADISON — Wisconsin employers could fire and refuse to hire convicted child molesters, kidnappers and murderers under a Republican bill that would carve out an exemption to the state's fair employment law.

If the proposal passes, it likely would be the first law of its kind in the country, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. The state Assembly is scheduled to take the bill up Wednesday.

Current state law prohibits employers from considering a criminal conviction when deciding to fire or hire someone unless the crime substantially relates to the job. The new bill would allow employers to fire or turn away convicted sexual or violent offenders, regardless of whether their crimes have a bearing on the job.

The bill's author, state Rep. Joel Kleefisch, R-Oconomowoc, said current state law allows sexual and violent offenders to hold jobs where they can interact with potential victims in ways that don't qualify as substantial, such as greeting customers at a retail store.

Employers should have the right to decide who works for them, he added.

"Every time you see on the news another child who's been raped or murdered by a predator pedophile it should make anybody's stomach turn and skin crawl," Kleefisch said. "At the time you commit a sexual assault, you've just made a lot of things in your life a lot harder from here on out."

Republicans control the Assembly, and Speaker Mike Huebsch, R-West Salem, supports the bill, his spokesman said.

But the measure also must pass the Democratic-controlled state Senate and get Democratic Gov. Jim Doyle's signature before it can become law.

Doyle's spokesman said the governor has to review the bill. A spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Judy Robson, D-Beloit, didn't immediately return messages.

The bill goes with another GOP measure that would allow a school district to fire or refuse to hire any felon, no matter whether the conviction had anything to do with the job. The Assembly is scheduled to consider that bill on Wednesday as well.

Doyle vetoed a nearly identical measure last session.

If Wisconsin passes the bill it will be a fair precedent for other states to follow suit. Child predators routinely say that the answer to the problem of child sex abuse is to educate children so that they know which one of the perverts are abusing them and which ones are loving them. Okay, I will also say the answer is education.........educate these pedofreaks that when they go after our kids there will be no welcoming place left for them to go.

Let your voice be heard before the Senate vote takes place!

Contact Wisconsin state senators HERE

Contact Governor Jim Doyle HERE
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