The fountain at Lake Eola Park will be lit up in purple Monday night in honor of National Crime Victims’ Rights Week.
Marsy’s Law for Florida, the group backing a “crime victim bill of rights” for the state constitution, is behind the Lake Eola event. The lake is scheduled to go purple at 5:59 pm.
NCVRW is sponsored by the Office for Victims of Crime, housed in the U.S. Justice Department, and is aimed at raising awareness of victim’s rights and the services available to them.
This year, NCVRW’s theme is “Expand the Circle: Reach All Victims” – emphasizing the importance of ensuring all crime victims, regardless of age, race, gender or sexual orientation, have access to services and support.
The group said in a Monday press release that the color “represents Floridians who have been victimized by violent crime, recognizing their bravery and reminding them they are not alone.”
Marsy’s Law for Florida added that it “hopes to educate Floridians about the gap that currently exists in our justice system, which ultimately leaves crime victims feeling voiceless and alone.”
The measure being pushed by the group is contained in Constitution Revision Commission Proposal 96, sponsored by Commissioner Timothy Cerio.
If passed by the CRC and Florida voters, amendment would require crime victims be told about their rights as well as services available to them and entitles them to updates on criminal proceedings, to be informed of meetings between the accused and state attorneys before plea deals are handed out, and gives them the option to attend and speak during court proceedings.
The proposal is named after Marsalee “Marsy” Nicholas of California who was stalked and killed by her ex-boyfriend in 1983. All but 15 states, including Florida, enumerate victims’ rights in their constitutions.
A recent poll of Florida voters found 78 percent were in favor of bringing Marsy’s Law to Florida, while 13 percent said they were against the amendment and 9 percent said they were unsure.