A bill to increase access for victims compensation funds
ALBANY, NY (Erie News Now)--Wednesday a Senate committee plans to vote on a bill that intends to expand eligibility for victims and survivors of crime to access victim compensation funds.
The bill re-introduced this session, intends to do this by removing a mandatory law enforcement reporting requirement and providing alternative forms of evidence that would show a qualifying crime occurred.
Some lawmakers said this legislation would help combat racial disparities within the state's criminal justice system.
“Our pain hurts just as much as anyone else's pain. Our grief is just as sad as anyone else's grief. So, our resources, should be the same as everyone else’s resources,” said Senator Zellnor Myrie (D-20th Senate District).
Tuesday, advocates, victims, and survivors of crime traveled to Albany to rally for this legislation.
Oresa Napper-Williams, who lost her 21 year-old son Andrell Daron Napper to an act of gun violence, said she is advocating for survivors.
“Signing the legislation on this bill will help parents and families to heal faster and quicker,” she said.
This bill has died in committee in previous years but some lawmakers said they are confident this will be the year it gets passed.