Hispanic Chamber Endorses Crime Victims’ Rights Amendment
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Brian Robinson
HISPANIC CHAMBER ENDORSES CRIME VICTIMS’ RIGHTS AMENDMENT
The Georgia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce announced today that it has endorsed Marsy’s Law for Georgia, a bill in the General Assembly that would elevate crime victims’ rights to the state constitution.
“A violent crime can shatter a victim’s life, but as the case enters our criminal justice system in Georgia, only the criminally accused has rights protected by our constitution,” said Tish Tallman, president and CEO of the Georgia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. “Crime victims should have equal rights. That’s why Hispanic business leaders in Georgia are proud to endorse Marsy’s Law and will encourage legislators to pass it in the 2017 legislative session.
“Elevating victims’ rights to the constitution will give many Hispanic crime victims the assurance they need to step forward and report the crimes committed against them.”
Since 2010, Georgia has had crime victims’ rights in state law. Marsy’s Law would strengthen those protections by enshrining them in the state’s highest legal document, the state constitution.
Marsy’s Law for Georgia would ensure the following:
- Victims and their families would receive information about their rights and the services available to them.
- They would have the right to receive notification of proceedings and major developments in the criminal case.
- They would have the right to receive timely notifications changes to the offender’s custodial status.
- Victims and their families would have the right to be present at court proceedings and provide input to the prosecutor before a plea agreement is finalized.
- They would have the right to be heard at plea or sentencing proceedings or any process that may result in the offender’s release.
- They would have the right to restitution.
An amendment to the Georgia Constitution requires the approval of 2/3 of the General Assembly to place it on the ballot for a majority of Georgia voters to decide.
“More than 30 states already have crime victims’ rights in their state constitutions, with three more set to add these rights this year,” said Tallman. “It’s time for Georgia to catch up with our fellow states and let crime victims know their rights are just as important as those afforded to those accused of harming them.
“With this endorsement, we encourage our members to reach out to their legislators and express their support for a ‘yes’ vote on Marsy’s Law for Georgia.”
The Georgia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce has 1,300 members across the state and is the fourth largest Hispanic chamber in the United States.