HARRISBURG – Legislation authored by state Rep. Sheryl M. Delozier (R-Cumberland) that would give crime victims legal standing in court, update crime victims’ compensation, provide notice of events in the judicial processes and enhance victims’ confidentiality for domestic and sexual violence crimes passed the House on concurrence today. The bill will now advance to the governor’s desk for his signature.
“My House Bill 2464
bolsters Pennsylvania’s Crime Victims’ Bill of Rights to ensure victims can stand in court and assert their own rights. The Senate contributed legislative input in their amendments by adding needed Justice Reinvestment Initiative (JRI) language to this important bill. It is critical to understand the bill does not change the rights victims have, but it gives them recourse when their rights are ignored and provides for greater confidentiality, eases the burden of seeking compensation and clarifies pertinent definitions,” Delozier said. “I am happy my colleagues in both chambers have recognized the need for this legislation and have joined me in prioritizing victims’ rights. This is a comprehensive bill that I hope will aid many crime victims.”
Currently, crime victims are bound by the prosecutors handling their cases or the agencies supervising their offenders. It is up to these individuals to honor the victims’ protections. Giving victims standing is part of Marsy’s Law, of which Delozier has been a long-time sponsor. Marsy’s Law is a constitutional amendment to guarantee crime victims’ rights. When the constitutional amendment was being deliberated, more than 1.7 million Pennsylvanians voted in favor on the 2019 ballot, but it was ultimately laid away by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court due to a technicality with the ballot question.
I remain supportive of enshrining the rights of our victims in the Constitution and will continue to work on that issue, but the urgency of supporting our crime victims is too high to not use the tools we currently have at our disposal through statute. I hope the governor also sees the importance of this legislation, and promptly signs the bill into law,” Delozier added.
Questions about this legislation or any other state government related issue can be directed to Delozier’s office at 717-761-4665.
Representative Sheryl Delozier
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Media Contact: Katelin Morrison