|Posted:||March 22, 2022 09:50 AM|
|From:||Representative Sheryl M. Delozier|
|To:||All House members|
|Subject:||Establishing Standing for Victims of Crime|
|In prior legislative sessions, I was proud to stand with many of you in supporting Marsy’s Law: A constitutional amendment to guarantee the rights of our crime victims. I was even more gratified to see more than 1.7 million Pennsylvanians voting in approval of Marsy’s Law to support our Commonwealth’s crime victims. Although the constitutional amendment was set aside by court order based on a technicality, my drive to support our crime victims continues, and I invite you to join me in co-sponsoring legislation to set into statute one of the key features of Marsy’s Law.
Pennsylvania already has a meaningful statutory Crime Victims’ Bill of Rights, but those protections lack an important feature. Crime victims are beholden to others, namely the prosecutors handling their cases or the agencies supervising convicted offenders, to honor those protections. Crime victims do not have the legal right – on their own – to stand in court and assert their rights. My bill would give crime victims that legal standing, so that they can be assured of receiving the very protections that we, as a General Assembly, have promised to them by law. It would not authorize any monetary penalties, but instead would allow crime victims to be granted court orders directing that their rights be honored as intended by current law. This part of Marsy’s Law can be accomplished by statute, and while I have not given up my advocacy for a constitutional amendment, the urgency of supporting our crime victims could not be higher. This bill cannot wait.
Please join me as staunch and tireless advocates for our crime victims by joining me in co-sponsoring this legislation. Then I will look forward to joining you while voting in support of Marsy’s Law again.
Introduced as HB2464