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Thursday
Apr102014

Chicago-Sun Times: "Senate puts victims-rights amendment on Nov. 4 ballot"

ELISE DISMER


SPRINGFIELD—Following the House's lead, the Illinois Senate Thursday unanimously approved putting a proposed amendment to the Illinois Constitution before voters this fall that would increase crime victim rights.

The measure, which passed 59-0, would strengthen victims’ existing constitutional rights to be notified about court hearings, granted time to tell the court about the impact of the crime, obtain a hearing before their confidential court records are opened and be given standing to appeal court decisions that impact their rights.

The constitution now provides those rights but doesn’t give victims with any means to enforce them, which advocates say has resulted in victims’ rights often being ignored.

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