Here is the just released joint statement of two of the most important organizations in the abolition movement. Fewer voices are more powerful than those of murder victims families.
Statement of Murder Victims’ Families for Human Rights
The Journey of Hope….From Violence to Healingon the 1000th Execution
Victims’ Families Call for End to Executions
As our country approaches the 1000th execution since 1977, we think about the losses represented by that number. We think of the loss of the life of the murder victim, and the loss to that victim’s family and community. We are people who have experienced that loss directly. The question, “How would you feel if someone in your family were murdered?” is not a hypothetical question for us; it is the reality we must live with every day. But we do not believe that the death penalty will bring us closure, healing, or justice. Another killing does not bring back our family member and it does not make us feel safer. We would like to live in a society that demonstrates its concern for victims by devoting resources to preventing violence and to addressing the real needs of victims in the aftermath of violence.
We think, too, about all the families who have been left behind in the aftermath of 1000 executions: the families of the person who was executed. After 1000 executions, how many parents, siblings, children, and other relatives are left isolated in their grief and lacking the support offered to others who suffer the loss of a family member? It is time to consider the social costs of the death penalty: how many people are affected by a single execution? In particular, how many children?
As families of murder victims and families of people who have been executed, we stand together and declare that it is time to abolish the death penalty.
Murder Victims’ Families for Human Rights and the Journey of Hope…From Violence to Healing are two organizations whose membership includes survivors of homicide victims who are opposed to the death penalty.
Renny Cushing, Executive Director
Murder Victims’ Families for Human Rights
617 491 9600 (0) 617 930-5196 (c)
Bill Pelke, President
Journey of Hope…From Violence to Healing
877-924-4483 (O) 305-775-5823 (C)