Commonwealth of Massachusetts
A Proclamation
His Excellency Governor Deval L. Patrick

Whereas More than 33 million Americans who are victims of crime each year suffer emotional, physical, psychological and financial harm; and

Whereas Victims, witnesses and their families deserve to be treated with dignity, respect, and compassion and afforded opportunities for healing and justice; and

Whereas Certain types of crime, such as domestic and sexual violence; hate crimes; and violence against children, elders, persons with disabilities, immigrants and refugees, too often remain unreported because victims are intimidated, threatened, stigmatized and met with skepticism; and

Whereas Our shared goal is to work together to ensure access and equity of rights and services for all victims regardless of age, gender, race, ethnicity, socio-economic status, religion, sexual orientation and gender identity; and

Whereas The Victims’ Movement has made great strides in addressing many hurdles survivors experience including physical and emotional injuries, costly financial burdens, and victim-blaming attitudes; however, these and other hurdles still endure; and

Whereas Our shared goal is to work together in a coordinated, collaborative manner to advance meaningful and accessible rights and services for crime victims of diverse backgrounds statewide; and

Whereas Massachusetts continues to rely on victims and survivors to develop and advance public policy and  resulting best practices to ensure healing and serve the public interest; and

Whereas We will continue to advance the victim rights movement, inspired by the anguish and resilience of victims and survivors in the Commonwealth, across the country, and around the world,

Now, Therefore, I, Deval L. Patrick, Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, do hereby proclaim April 2012, to be,

Crime Victims' Rights Month

And urge all the citizens of the Commonwealth to take cognizance of this event and participate fittingly in its observance.

Given at the Executive Chamber in Boston, this twenty-second day of March, in the year two thousand and twelve, and of the Independence of the United States of America, the two hundred and thirty-fifth.
By His Excellency                  

Deval L. Patrick                   
Governor of the Commonwealth          

William Francis Galvin            
Secretary of the Commonwealth

God Save the Commonwealth of Massachusetts