Senator Stewart Greenleaf

New Legislation Redefines Human Trafficking

Jul 9, 2014

Special series: This week we're exploring legislative action taken recently in Harrisburg on important bills that were overshadowed by the passage of the state budget.

Thirty-two states, including Pennsylvania, have the death penalty. Since 1976 when the U.S. Supreme Court reinstated capital punishment,  Rhode Island (1984),  New York (2007), New Jersey (2007),  New Mexico (2009) Connecticut (2012), and Maryland (2013)  have abolished it. But the repeal in the last three states was not retroactive so they still have prisoners on death row.  Massachusetts' death penalty statute was nullified in 1984 by court rulings.

Could Pennsylvania become the next state to abolish capital punishment?

More than 8,000 people are awaiting transplants in Pennsylvania. That’s according to Donate Life PA which also said an average of 490 people die each year while waiting for a matching organ to become available.

SB 850, also known as the Donate Life PA Act, would revise the 1994 law on organ donation.

The legislation aims to create more awareness about donation, emphasize that transplantation is the priority for donated organs and increase the likelihood that people will donate.