Saturday, September 24, 2011

Derek's TraveLOGUE

I have gotten a lot of questions over the years about traveling while on the registry. Well, I've done a fair share of traveling over the years. I haven't let registration get me down. I've been able to enjoy many new things thanks to friends and family inviting me to homes across the country. I love taking pictures, trying the foods of the region, and seeing places I've never seen before. Yes, even on the registry, travel IS possible, if you are willing to plan ahead.

Any time I travel, I contact my local registrar. I let them know where I plan on going. Next, I call the area I plan on going to see what the rules of registration are. After all, I'm not MOVING to that place, I'm just visiting. Each state has different rules on visiting registrants. One state may require registration after a couple of days, while others may allow a week or two without registration. For example, when my mom was alive, I took frequent trips to Alabama. I'd go to the Sheriff's office here in Cincinnati and let them know where I'm going, and in Alabama I'd have to register and fill out paperwork. AL was strict so I had to do a FULL registration-- fingerprints, mug shot, etc. However, they noted my return home and how long I planned on being there. Not every state does this, thankfully.

I know it seems frustrating, but I teach the CYA principle. A little aggravation now saves you potential 10 year sentences in federal prison by overzealous prosecutors. States do not advertise their visitation policies. However, the sheriff's office is the best place to start. After all, they can make you aware of local laws, like park bans and other local ordinances.

It sounds like simple advice but that is all it takes. So long as you follow the rules you should be okay.