The Louisiana House Administration of Criminal Justice Committee today voted unanimously in favor of House Bill 85, which would make crime survivors or victims’ families eligible for compensation regardless of criminal history. The following statement is by Terry Landry Jr., policy counsel for the SPLC Action Fund, a member of Louisianans for Prison Alternatives:
“Louisiana is right to provide crime survivors or victims’ families compensation, but for too long an exclusion in the law has left many overlooked because of past criminal history. A person is not less of a victim because he or she had a previous run-in with the justice system, nor should they be re-victimized and further punished for a past offense. In fact, many people who commit crimes are or will become victims of crime.
“It is important that Louisiana recognize the traumatic experiences of all victims and their families. We urge the Legislature to support House Bill 85.”