MCASA announces 2012 legislative priorities

Jan 12th, 2012

Maryland’s 2012 Legislative Session began on Wednesday, January 12th. MCASA supports legislation that promotes justice for survivors of sexual violence, accountability for offenders and protection for the general public. MCASA responds to policy questions and legislative initiatives throughout Maryland's legislative session (January-April). We expect our priority list to expand, but our 2012 priorities currently include the following: Funding for Services for Sexual Assault Survivors One of MCASA’s top priorities is to maintain funding for rape crisis centers and prevent loss of services for victims of child sexual abuse and sexual assault. Sex Crimes – Fondling During Burglary Most sex crimes in Maryland are treated with additional seriousness when committed in conjunction with a burglary in the first, second, or third degree.  Sex crimes involving touching of genitals or breasts during a burglary are not.  This bill would re-categorize 4th degree sex offenses committed during a burglary as 3d degree offenses, thereby fixing a loophole in Maryland sex crimes law.  Lead Sponsor:  Delegate Luke Clippinger. Protective Orders – Expansion to Include Sexual Assault and Dating Violence Many victims of sexual violence and victims of dating violence are eligible for peace orders instead of protective orders.  Protective orders can be issued for a longer period of time and are generally taken more seriously.  This bill would expand the “persons eligible for relief” in the protective order statute to include cases involving sexual violence and cases involving parties in dating relationships.  Lead Sponsor:  Senator Chris Shank. Your calls, visits, letters and emails make a difference. Please help us end sexual violence in Maryland. Visit our Take Action web page to find out how! Thank you for your support.

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