ENGROSSED HOUSE JOINT MEMORIAL 4020
State of Washington 55th Legislature 1997 Regular Session
By Representatives Ballasiotes, Costa, Radcliff, Cole, Hankins, Quall, Skinner, Morris, Thompson, Poulsen, Kenney, DeBolt, Conway, Mason, Benson, Cooper, Delvin, Blalock, Honeyford, Dunshee, Van Luven, Zellinsky, Mulliken, Alexander, Scott, L. Thomas, Clements, Parlette, Mastin, Chandler, Schoesler, Robertson and Linville
Read first time 03/15/97. Referred to Committee on .
TO THE HONORABLE WILLIAM J. CLINTON, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES, AND TO THE PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE AND THE SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, AND TO THE SENATE AND HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES OF THE UNITED STATES, IN CONGRESS ASSEMBLED:
We, your Memorialists, the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of Washington, in legislative session assembled, respectfully represent and petition as follows:
WHEREAS, In applying and interpreting the vital guarantees of the United States Constitution that protects the liberties of all citizens, the criminal justice system has lost an essential balance; and
WHEREAS, One violent crime is committed in America every sixteen seconds; and
WHEREAS, The criminal justice system has not provided sufficient protection or representation of the innocent, the honest, and the helpless victims of crime; and
WHEREAS, With over thirty-five million Americans victimized in the United States each year, crime victims are rapidly becoming a majority; and
WHEREAS, Crime victims play an indispensable role in bringing offenders to justice, thus preventing further violence; and
WHEREAS, As a nation devoted to freedom, liberty, and justice for all, Americans must plant the seeds of justice to restore and protect the rights of those who have been criminally victimized; and
WHEREAS, Harvesting justice over the last two decades has been accomplished in part by the millions of survivors of criminal acts, their families, and advocates whose commitment and spirit has persevered while confronting an increasingly violent nation; and
WHEREAS, In 1982, the President's Task Force on Victims of Crime recommended an amendment to the Constitution of the United States addressing victims' rights; and
WHEREAS, In 1989, the citizens of Washington State adopted an amendment to the state Constitution granting basic and fundamental rights to the victims and families of victims of felony crimes; and
WHEREAS, Under Article V of the Constitution of the United States, amendments to the Constitution of the United States may be proposed by the Congress of the United States or, upon the application of the legislatures of two-thirds of the states, the Congress shall call a constitutional convention for the purpose of proposing amendments; and
WHEREAS, There is currently before the Congress for consideration a proposed victims' rights amendment to the Constitution of the United States;
NOW, THEREFORE, Your Memorialists, respectfully request that the Congress adopt the proposed victims' rights amendment to the Constitution of the United States, and that the amendment be submitted to the states for ratification.
BE IT RESOLVED, That copies of this Memorial be immediately transmitted to the Honorable William J. Clinton, President of the United States, the President of the United States Senate, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, and each member of Congress from the State of Washington.
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