Merkley: Hate Crimes Prevention Legislation a Major Step for Justice

Washington, D.C.

Following the adoption of the Matthew Shepard Hate Crimes Prevention Act as an
amendment to the National Defense Authorization Bill,
Oregon’s Senator Jeff Merkley released the following statement:

“For too long, hate crimes have
fragmented and isolated our communities. I am proud that the Senate has
voted to protect those who are victimized simply for who they are.  Hate
crime prevention begins at the local level and this amendment provides our
police officers and state troopers with additional federal support to better
prevent and respond to allegations of hate crimes.


“Senator Kennedy has
championed this legislation for over a decade and its passage is a direct
result of his tireless efforts.  All Americans, no matter their
background, identity, or disability, deserve to live without fear and be
treated with respect.”