Crime Victims' Rights Week

4/2/2017

WHEREAS, the preservation of peace in our communities and protection from violence for all citizens of the Commonwealth are fundamental priorities of government; and

WHEREAS, every year thousands of Virginians of all ages, abilities, and economic, racial, and social backgrounds experience emotional, physical, psychological, and financial harm as a result of criminal activity; and

WHEREAS, victim services programs and public safety organizations throughout Virginia collaborate to provide vital services to victims, including crisis intervention, hotlines, emergency shelter, legal advocacy, and other programs for children, teenagers, and adults; and

WHEREAS, providing quality services to victims builds trust and restores hope in communities, and the Commonwealth dedicates state and federal funds to support victims’ services throughout Virginia and provides over $67 million in state and federal funds to support 462 crime victim assistance programs throughout Virginia; and

WHEREAS, agencies of the Commonwealth, the Virginia Victim Assistance Network, the Virginia Sexual and Domestic Violence Action Alliance, and numerous other victim advocacy organizations work alongside local victim assistance  programs, criminal justice officials, and concerned citizens throughout the Commonwealth to enhance public awareness of crime victims’ rights; and

WHEREAS, the theme for this years’ Crime Victims’ Rights Week, “Strength, Justice, Resilience”, recognizes the collaborative work of victim advocates dedicated to serving crime victims, and emphasizes the rights of all Americans to live free from  threats of violence and criminal activity; and

WHEREAS, on April 16, 2007, on the campus of Virginia Tech, a tragic chapter was added to Virginia’s history when 32 students and faculty were killed, and many more were wounded; and

WHEREAS, in the midst of this unspeakable tragedy, and throughout the intervening 10 years, the Virginia Tech community remains united in steadfast devotion to remembrance and provides an admirable example of strength, resilience, and the noble pursuit of justice; and

WHEREAS, the Commonwealth is dedicated to strengthening victims and survivors in the aftermath of crime, building resilience in our communities and in our victim responders, and working for justice for all victims and survivors; and

WHEREAS, victim services providers, criminal justice officials and concerned citizens throughout Virginia are joining forces to raise awareness of victims’ rights and observe National Crime Victims’ Rights Week;

NOW, THEREFORE, I, Terence R. McAuliffe, do hereby recognize April 2-8, 2017, as CRIME VICTIMS’ RIGHTS WEEK in our COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA, and I call this observance to the attention of all our citizens.

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2017