The Home Secretary of the United Kingdom announced plans to implement a lifetime ban on allowing convicted sex offenders to change their name and gender. Suella Braverman, a member of Britain’s Conservative Party, hopes to close a loophole that has enabled criminals to avoid registering as sex offenders.
According to The Times, Braverman announced the new legislation at the Conservative Party conference in Manchester today, explaining in her speech that any individual guilty of committing a sexual offense would face charges if caught trying to change their identity.
In addition, the new law aims to exploit some existing loopholes before the legislation is officially introduced, including allowing criminals to change their names before a verdict is reached or changing their names before a trial to avoid registering as a sex offender afterwards.
As a result, the government will be collaborating with multiple public agencies to catch suspicious people who “register with government agencies that have no previous record of them.”
Member of Parliament for the Labour Party, Sarah Champion, suggested placing a marker on the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency and HM Passport Office records of all sex offenders, raising “an alert whenever an application for a name change comes through.”
Under the current requirement, sex offenders must alert law enforcement “within three days of changing their name.”
Although failing to inform the police is considered a criminal offense, in the past several years, thousands of convicted sex offenders have changed their names and genders without notice.
Between 2019 and 2022, nearly 12000 criminals were prosecuted for failing to notify authorities about updating their identities. Among them were child rapists, who have exploited existing identification laws to gain access to children.
In 2020, it was announced that at least 900 sex offenders had “disappeared from the police radar” after simply changing their identification without self-declaring that information to authorities.
Women’s rights activists have already raised concerns about the ease with which male sex offenders can self-identify as a woman, and several recent cases have put the issue at the forefront of the gender ideology debate in the UK.
According to the most recent data made available by Keep Prisons Single Sex UK, 49% of male prisoners in England who identify as transgender have at least one conviction for a sexual offense.
In recent years, there here have been multiple reports of many rapists and pedophiles changing their identification during their trials, after sentencing, or just prior to being released from prison.
Earlier this year, a woman who endured years of sexual abuse at the hands of her pedophile father revealed that he had begun identifying as transgender and had adopted a new name while in prison, and was set to be released “as a woman.”
Ceri-Lee Galvin, 24, was sexually abused for nine years beginning from the age of eight by Clive Bundy. In 2016, Bundy was sentenced to 15 years in prison for his crimes, which included recording the assaults and sharing them online with other pedophiles. Two years ago, Galvin learned her father had transitioned to a “woman” while in prison, and was using the name Claire Fox.
Galvin was told by a victim liaison officer that the only reason she had been made aware of the change is because her father had asked her to be informed, but that she would have otherwise been prevented from knowing.
News of Braverman’s proposed ban has been met with widespread praise. Emily Konstantas, chief executive of the Safeguarding Alliance, described the announcement as a monumental victory.
“No longer will the rights of a sex offender be given priority over the protection of society’s most vulnerable,” said Konstantas. “This change could not have come quick enough and is the biggest change to safeguarding legislation to date. We would like to thank everyone who has supported the Safeguarding Alliance and Della’s Law over the years.”
Notably, the legislation, which has amassed cross-party support, is called Della’s Law, named after child sex abuse survivor Della Wright who “waived her right to anonymity to share her story” after living with a known sex offender when she was seven