To that end, legislators announced a new law October 26 notifying people by an email alert whenever a sex offender moves into their zip code.
The bill would especially help residents of the 11385 zip code district in Queens, which covers Glendale and Ridgewood. The district has the fourth highest number of registered sex offenders (54) in the borough.
Lawmakers unveiled statistics for the top ten zip codes in Queens along with the proposed legislation, announced by state senators Jeff Klein and Joe Addabbo, and assembly members Catherine Noland and Rory Lancman.
The data shows that as of 2009, there were 1,132 registered sex offenders living in Queens. The three zip codes with the highest population of sex offenders are 11691, 11434 and 11412, respectively.
The new email notification system would help modernize the current online registry, which is “hard to navigate,” said Klein. He said residents and the state alike could better monitor sex offenders under the new bill.
Addabbo said once residents begin receiving email alerts, they would no longer have to spend cumbersome periods of time searching the state’s online registry for information.
“Community notification via email offers parents vital information which they can use to protect their children from becoming victims of these predators,” said Addabbo.
Joann Berger said she worries for her children when they walk home from school in Maspeth.
“It’s a concern of mine,” said Berger, who supports the bill. “I want [them to] know so they’re aware of what’s going on.”
Her friend Marianne Barnes, also of Maspeth, agreed.
“Like anything we’ll have to wait and see” if the bill is effective, said Barnes, a mother of three. “But it’s better than nothing.”