Referendum Question: Marsy’s Law Victims Rights

On Nov. 5th Pennsylvanians will be asked to vote on whether to add a section addressing crime victims’ rights to the Pennsylvania Constitution Declaration of Rights. The proposed language is modeled on Marsy’s Law, a type of constitutional bill of rights for crime victims. This measure is supported by Gov. Tom Wolf and many victims organizations. It may, however, curtail a criminal defendant’s rights as well.

See League of Women Voters’ article and also take a look at the ACLU’s objections when you think about how you will vote on this. Ballotpedia has in-depth background. Also compare wording of the proposed amendment to that of the PA Crime Victims Act of 1998.

This is the exact wording of the Amendment: “Shall the Pennsylvania constitution be amended to grant certain rights to crime victims including to be treated with fairness, respect and dignity; considering their safety in bail proceedings; timely notice and opportunity to take part in public proceedings; reasonable protection from the accused; right to refuse discovery requests made by the accused; restitution and return of property; proceedings free from delay; and to be informed of these rights, so they can enforce them.”

Come to Facebook@emmaus2dems and help us discuss this important issue.