Harrisburg – June 5, 2019 – State Senator Art Haywood (D-Montgomery/Philadelphia) released the following statement in support of criminal justice reform to protect crime victims in Senate Bill 502 passing the full Senate today as part of a package to enact Phase II of the Justice Reinvestment Initiative (“JRI”):

“Victims of crime do have rights. We can make sure there are services in place to assist them. Part of criminal justice reform is how we treat victims.

“I thank my colleagues in the Senate for unanimous support today of revisions to the Crime Victims Act that I am sponsoring on a bipartisan basis with Senators Camera Bartolotta and Vincent Hughes. This legislation will give crime victims access to justice system information and improvements in compensation to increase fairness.

“In addition, the passage of two other pieces of legislation enacting Justice Reinvestment Phase II which passed on the floor today will move us away from the over incarceration that plagues our communities and the Commonwealth. I look forward to approval by the House and Governor Wolf.”

The Justice Reinvestment Phase II package (SBs 500-502) approved by the Senate will strengthen public safety, improve protection of crime victims, and reduce the costs of both prison and probation. SB 500 creates a County Adult Probation and Parole Advisory Committee to make recommendations to improve county probation and parole. SB 501 streamlines parole and improves sentencing to reduce incarceration.