HB 2464 reduces barriers to accessing victim compensation and HB 2032 strengthens protections for sexual assault victims – both bills passed with bipartisan support.
HARRISBURG – Governor Tom Wolf today signed into law HB 2032 and HB 2464, helping to strengthen support for victims and expand access to critical help. HB 2032 is sponsored by Rep. Meghan Schroeder (R-Bucks), and will ensure that there are exceptions to the mandatory reporting of identifying information while investigating sexual assault cases, allowing victims to protect their privacy as they seek healthcare and evidence is collected in their case. HB 2464 is sponsored by Rep. Sheryl Delozier (R-Cumberland) and includes policies championed by Rep. Natalie Mihalek (R-Allegheny/Washington) and Sen. Camera Bartolotta (R-Beaver/Washington/Greene). This bill will expand access to the state’s victim compensation program, eliminating the 72-hour time limit for reporting a crime to authorities to qualify for compensation, making sure no survivor is ever denied help with counseling or funeral expenses based on allegations about the victim’s behavior, and extending the time limit to file for compensation from two to five years. Both bills achieve goals outlined by the Safer Pennsylvania Act.
The Alliance for Safety and Justice (ASJ) released the following statement from Alexandra Abboud, local crime survivor and Pennsylvania state manager for Crime Survivors for Safety and Justice:
“Supporting crime victims in their recovery is one of many proven solutions to violence and crime. When we provide access to critical services and programs, we help put an end to cycles of trauma that make us all less safe.
We thank Governor Wolf for acknowledging the importance of survivors in public safety by signing HB 2032 and HB 2464 into law. These bills include historic reforms that further protect sexual assault victims, and knock down barriers to victim compensation programs for all victims.
While there is more work to do to put an end to violence and trauma, today is a day that survivors should be proud of. Our mission continues as we use our voices and power to bring real safety solutions to Pennsylvania.”
About the Alliance for Safety and Justice
The Alliance for Safety and Justice is a national organization that aims to win evidence-based new safety priorities in states across the country. It also brings together diverse crime survivors to advance policies that help communities most harmed by crime and violence, as part of Crime Survivors for Safety and Justice – its national network of over 90,000 crime survivors with thousands of members in Pennsylvania. For more information, visit: https://allianceforsafetyandjustice.org or https://cssj.org.