|Posted:||March 2, 2021 02:55 PM|
|From:||Representative Tina M. Davis|
|To:||All House members|
|Subject:||Broadening the Scope, Powers, and Duties of the Office of Victim Advocate|
|The Office of Victim Advocate (OVA) was created in 1995 to provide crime victims with notifications, support, and advocacy services. In fiscal year 2019-2020 alone, the OVA registered over 54,000 crime victims. Although this number is staggering, it is proof that the OVA plays an important role in our communities for the survivors of crime and their families. Victim assistance coordinators at OVA work with local advocates at community based victim service programs as well as County District Attorneys’ Offices to ensure that all victims of crime who have requested post-sentencing services, receive the compassionate and individual attention and advocacy that they deserve.
Under current law, the OVA is narrowly defined as only representing the interests of crime victims before the PA Board of Probation and Parole and the PA Department of Corrections. I am re-introducing legislation that would clarify the OVA’s role by expanding its powers and duties to not only represent, but advocate for the interests of crime victims. Moreover, my proposal would also allow the OVA to support victims of juvenile crimes.
I believe this legislation will allow the OVA to better support and serve crime victims throughout the Commonwealth. Considering all that the OVA has and continues to do...now more than ever – we need to help and allow them to do more for the survivors of crime. I hope you will join me in co-sponsoring this important proposal.
Introduced as HB1458