DeWine announces bill that provides for crime victims, witnesses - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

DeWine announces bill that provides for crime victims, witnesses and family members

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Attorney General Mike DeWine joined State Senator Peggy Lehner to announce a new bill that would update laws intended to help victims of hate crimes. 

The measure, SB322 would increase the accessibility of crime victims' funds and increase the amount victims can receive.

"Too often when a crime is committed, others besides the victim are unintentionally harmed. This measure would acknowledge that those who witness a crime or are involved in the immediate aftermath suffer trauma as well. This measure helps those victims heal, as well, by providing funds for mental health treatment or work loss," says DeWine.

Senator Lehner says she's proud to work with DeWine to continue to strengthen our crime victims reparation program. "This legislation would provide necessary reforms to ensure crime victims and their families receive support efficiently, effectively, and true to their needs," Lehner added.

The measure would recognize a new category of the victim which would include; a person who is not the direct victim of a crime, but experiences severe trauma and is either a family member of the victim, a witness, someone who arrives at the crime scene in the immediate aftermath, or an immediate family member or caretaker of victim

Someone who meets these guidelines would be a "victim in their own right" and could qualify for up to $15,000 for wages lost due to counseling and treatment.

The text of the bill is available on the Ohio General Assembly website.

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