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(J.R.H. 212)

Offered by: Representative Voyer of Morristown.

Whereas, the year 2000 marks the 20th anniversary of the commemoration of National Crime Victims' Rights Week, and

Whereas, the victims' rights discipline in America has, for nearly three decades, dared to dream of a nation that is free from violence, and an America where crime victims are consistently provided supportive services to help them cope with the trauma of crime and victimization, and

Whereas, while the annual rate of most crimes continues to decrease, U. S. residents still experience nearly 31 million criminal victimizations, including nearly 8.1 million violent crimes, and

Whereas, over 30,000 federal and state laws have been passed that define and protect the rights of crime victims, and

Whereas, 32 states have passed constitutional amendments that afford crime victims important participatory rights throughout the criminal and juvenile justice systems, and

Whereas, a federal constitutional amendment expanding crime victims' rights in the federal criminal justice system is currently pending in the U. S. Congress, and

Whereas, important partnerships have been formed among criminal and juvenile justice agencies, allied professionals, and victim services to ensure that crime victims are treated with dignity and respect, and

Whereas, our nation's commitment to victim assistance, crime prevention, and public safety has resulted in countless individuals and collaborative initiatives that truly promote justice for crime victims, and

Whereas, the new millennium affords us the opportunity to continue to dare to dream of a nation where liberty and justice for all includes every person who has been touched by crime, now therefore be it

Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives:

That the General Assembly recognizes the importance of ensuring that crime victims are afforded the greatest possible right to participate in the criminal justice process, and encourages efforts to achieve this important goal, both during Crime Victims Week which shall be observed in the year 2000 from April 9th through 15th, and throughout the year, and be it further

Resolved: That the Secretary of State be directed to send a copy of this resolution to Lori Hayes, Executive Director of Crime Victim Services at the state office complex in Waterbury.