Maryland lawmakers pass ‘transformational reform’ to compensation for crime victims

Dylan Segelbaum / The Baltimore Banner

April 9, 2024

By Dylan Segelbaum, reprinted by permission from The Baltimore Banner. Photo by Kylie Cooper for The Baltimore Banner.

Maryland lawmakers have passed a bill to revamp the system for victim compensation in the state; changes advocates say will not only help survivors of crime and their families, but improve public safety.

The Victim Compensation Reform Act of 2024 earned final approval in the Maryland House of Delegates with a 131-4 vote and cleared the Maryland Senate in a 47-0 vote. The legislation will overhaul the Criminal Injuries Compensation Board, a body that’s designed to help victims of crime.

Gov. Wes Moore, a Democrat, had put forward the bill as part of his public safety agenda for the 2024 legislative session.

“I am just overjoyed. I’m very grateful to the governor and to the legislators,” said Deborah Haskins, a licensed clinical professional counselor and retired counselor-educator who testified about her experience with the Criminal Injuries Compensation Board in Annapolis.

Read the full article from The Baltimore Banner here.