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Crime Victim Services

  • Publications (127)
  • Resources (76)
  • Forum Discussions (5)
  • FAQs (80)
  • Funding (2)
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OVC and OVC-Sponsored Publications

2015 National Crime Victims' Rights Week (NCVRW) Resource Guide (January 2015) OVC, 182 pages, NCJ 247813.
The 2015 NCVRW Resource Guide, released ahead of National Crime Victims’ Rights Week, April 19 to 25, highlights this year’s theme, Engaging Communities. Empowering Victims. The Guide includes a wide array of user-friendly outreach tools and sample products, a Theme DVD, current statistics on victimization, information on the history of victims’ rights in the United States, and concrete, practical ideas for engaging your community and empowering victims. Hardcopy versions of this year's Guide, which can be ordered through the National Criminal Justice Reference Service (NCJRS) at www.ncjrs.gov, include Introductory Materials and NCVRW Resource Guide Artwork.
Abstract | PDF | HTML
 
Identity (ID) Theft Toolkit (2014) OVC-Sponsored, Grant, 2 pages, NCJ 248389.
National Identity Theft Victims Assistance Network (NITVAN) coalitions across the country each contributed to the creation of this toolkit for victim advocates, attorneys, law enforcement officers, and anyone else involved in assisting victims. In this toolkit, you’ll find guidance on improving and expanding service to identity theft victims, starting a collaborative group in your area, as well as downloadable, ready-to-customize training materials, brochures, and more.
Abstract | HTML
 
Innovative Practices for Victim Services: Report From the Field (December 2014) OVC, Bulletin, 20 pages, NCJ 248495.
This e-bulletin provides brief descriptions of the innovative practices currently used by VOCA victim assistance and compensation programs throughout the country. This online resource promotes the replication of these practices, which cover six key program areas: needs assessment, systems advocacy and coordination, compensation, underserved populations, victims’ rights and services, and technology.
Abstract | HTML
 
Circle of Healing for Native Children Endangered by Drugs (December 2014) OVC, 0 pages, NCJ 248443.
This seven-video series and companion resource guide feature Native programs and practices that incorporate cultural stories and traditions to help children, families, and communities in Indian Country to heal from substance abuse-related trauma.
Abstract | HTML
 
Eight Benefits of NIBRS to Victim Service Providers (November 2014) OVC, Bulletin, 0 pages, NCJ 248480.
This e-bulletin describes how victim service providers can use National Incident-Based Reporting System (NIBRS)–a system for recording crimes known to the police–to gain a better understanding of specific types of victimization, determine disparities between victims known to law enforcement and those receiving victim services, and identify underserved groups of crime victims. Data presented from the 15 states which currently report to NIBRS can assist victim service providers to identify patterns of crime and victimization that can justify the need for additional resources and guide decisions on optimal resource development.
Abstract | HTML
 

OJP Publications

Improving Human Trafficking Victim Identification-Validation and Dissemination of a Screening Tool (June 2014) NIJ-Sponsored, Grant, 455 pages, NCJ 246712.
This guide provides users with recommendations on how to build trust with potential victims, maintain confidentiality, and use the tool correctly. When properly used, the tool could give victim service providers, law enforcement and legal, healthcare, and social service providers with a standard means of identifying victims of human trafficking.
Abstract | PDF
 
Screening for Human Trafficking: Guidelines for Administering the Trafficking Victim Identification Tool (TVIT) (June 2014) NIJ-Sponsored, Grant, 37 pages, NCJ 246713.
This tool is designed for victim service providers and other providers to assist in identifying victims of human trafficking. Developed over the last seven years by the Vera Institute of Justice in collaboration with 11 victim service organizations in California, Colorado, New York, Texas and Washington, this NIJ-funded tool has been validated with a diverse sample of potential victims of trafficking and found reliable in predicting labor and sex trafficking.
Abstract | PDF
 
Untested Evidence in Sexual Assault Cases (February 2013) NIJ-Sponsored, 6 pages, NCJ 241356.
In this article from the Sexual Assault Report™, NIJ staff member Nancy Ritter explores: whether every sexual assault kit (SAK) should be tested every kit - even ones that are 25 years old; should priority be given to certain kits, and if so, how do we decide; and how to handle cases in which the alleged perpetrator is already known. The article also explains where the weak spots are in collecting, storing, and testing kits; why the police might not send sexual assault kits to be tested; and what early evidence is showing about complex issues such as victim notification.
Abstract | PDF
 
Practical Implications of Current Intimate Partner Violence Research for Victim Advocates and Service Providers (January 2013) NIJ-Sponsored, Grant, 260 pages, NCJ 244348.
This report expands and enhances the 2009 report titled "Practical Implications of Current Domestic Violence Research: For Law Enforcement, Prosecutors and Judges" to address the practical implications of current domestic violence research for victim advocates and service providers.
Abstract | PDF
 
No More Rights Without Remedies: An Impact Evaluation of the National Crime Victim Law Institute's Victims' Rights Clinics, Final Technical Report (2012) NIJ-Sponsored, Grant, 125 pages, NCJ 241752.
This grant report evaluates the National Crime Victim Law Institute's (NCVLI) victims' rights clinics. The clinics were designed to increase awareness of victims' rights among criminal justice professionals and to respond to violations of rights through legal advocacy. The current report examines the clinics' impact on the expansion of rights for victims, on court officials' attitudes toward victims' rights, on the extent to which victims' rights are honored in the criminal disposition process, and on the treatment of victims' rights in the print media. It also includes a discussion of sustainability of the clinics.
Abstract | PDF
 

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Each month the Nation's experts answer your questions about best practices in victim services. Below are upcoming and most recent session discussions in this topic:

On Mar 25 2015 at 2:00PM, Katie Monroe, Senior Advocate for National Partnerships at the Innocence Project, and Karin Ho, brings over 30 years combined experience as a victim advocate in the sexual assault, domestic violence and postconviction corrections field, hosted a discussion on Postconviction Exonerations and Victim Assistance

On Feb 25 2015 at 2:00PM, Jennifer Burkmire, advocate for children and a contract consultant for nonprofit organizations that provide social services, and Cynthia King, President of King & Associates, Inc, hosted a discussion on Developing an Effective Multidisciplinary Team

On Jan 28 2015 at 2:00PM, Jean Bruggeman, Esq., OVC Human Tafficking Fellow, and Rebecca Bender, Survivor and Founder of Rebecca Bender Ministries, hosted a discussion on Engaging Survivors in Combating Human Trafficking

On Dec 8 2014 at 2:00PM, Carole Warshaw, MD, Director, National Center on Domestic Violence, Trauma & Mental Health, and Gabriella Grant, Director, California Center of Excellence for Trauma Informed Care, hosted a discussion on Incorporating Trauma-Informed Care Principles Into Practice

On Nov 19 2014 at 2:00PM, Roe Bubar, J.D, Associate Professor at Colorado State University, and Leila Goldsmith, J.D., Child Advocacy Coordinator with the Tulalip Tribes of Washington, hosted a discussion on Forensic Interviewing in Tribal Communities


What is the difference between compensation and restitution?
Restitution is court-ordered and compensation is provided by the Victim Compensation Program in each... Read More

What type of protection does the U.S. Department of Justice provide to trafficking victims?
Information for trafficking victims is available in the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) brochu... Read More

How do I add my program/organization to the Online Directory of Crime Victim Services?
Please visit the Get Posted section of the Office for Victims of Crime (OVC) Online Directory of Cri... Read More

What is victim assistance?
Each year, states and territories receive Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) funds to support community-bas... Read More

What is the Online Directory of Crime Victim Services?
The Online Directory of Crime Victim Services is a Web-enabled, online resource sponsored by the Off... Read More

More FAQs


FY 2015 Enhanced Collaborative Model to Combat Human Trafficking (PDF 411 kb)
Deadline: 05/11/2015
OVC and BJA will award between $600,000 and $900,000 to law enforcement agencies and victim service providers to work collaboratively to develop and enhance multidisciplinary human trafficking task forces that combat sex and labor trafficking of foreign nationals and U.S. citizens of all sexes and ages. Eligible applicants are law enforcement agencies and victim service providers who submit separate but coordinated proposals that outline how this funding will be used to implement the human trafficking task force specified within the application. Those applying are urged to begin in advance of the May 11, 2015, deadline.


2016 National Crime Victims’ Rights Week Resource Guide (PDF 168 kb)
Deadline: 04/29/2015
OVC will award one cooperative agreement of up to $300,000 to conceptualize, develop, and produce a comprehensive kit that will serve as a resource for the victim services field to support efforts to heighten public awareness of crime victim issues nationwide during National Crime Victims’ Rights Week in April 2016, and throughout the year. Eligible applicants are nonprofit organizations, including tribal nonprofit organizations, faith and community-based organizations, and public agencies. Those applying are urged to begin in advance of the April 29, 2015, deadline.

More Funding Opportunities


Publications

OVC and OVC-Sponsored Publications

2015 National Crime Victims' Rights Week (NCVRW) Resource Guide (January 2015) OVC, 182 pages, NCJ 247813. The 2015 NCVRW Resource Guide, released ahead of National Crime Victims’ Rights Week, April 19 to 25, highlights this year’s theme, Engaging Communities. Empowering Victims. The Guide includes a wide array of user-friendly outreach tools and sample products, a Theme DVD, current statistics on victimization, information on the history of victims’ rights in the United States, and concrete, practical ideas for engaging your community and empowering victims. Hardcopy versions of this year's Guide, which can be ordered through the National Criminal Justice Reference Service (NCJRS) at www.ncjrs.gov, include Introductory Materials and NCVRW Resource Guide Artwork.
Abstract | PDF | HTML
 
Identity (ID) Theft Toolkit (2014) OVC-Sponsored, Grant, 2 pages, NCJ 248389. National Identity Theft Victims Assistance Network (NITVAN) coalitions across the country each contributed to the creation of this toolkit for victim advocates, attorneys, law enforcement officers, and anyone else involved in assisting victims. In this toolkit, you’ll find guidance on improving and expanding service to identity theft victims, starting a collaborative group in your area, as well as downloadable, ready-to-customize training materials, brochures, and more.
Abstract | HTML
 
Innovative Practices for Victim Services: Report From the Field (December 2014) OVC, Bulletin, 20 pages, NCJ 248495. This e-bulletin provides brief descriptions of the innovative practices currently used by VOCA victim assistance and compensation programs throughout the country. This online resource promotes the replication of these practices, which cover six key program areas: needs assessment, systems advocacy and coordination, compensation, underserved populations, victims’ rights and services, and technology.
Abstract | HTML
 
Circle of Healing for Native Children Endangered by Drugs (December 2014) OVC, 0 pages, NCJ 248443. This seven-video series and companion resource guide feature Native programs and practices that incorporate cultural stories and traditions to help children, families, and communities in Indian Country to heal from substance abuse-related trauma.
Abstract | HTML
 
Eight Benefits of NIBRS to Victim Service Providers (November 2014) OVC, Bulletin, 0 pages, NCJ 248480. This e-bulletin describes how victim service providers can use National Incident-Based Reporting System (NIBRS)–a system for recording crimes known to the police–to gain a better understanding of specific types of victimization, determine disparities between victims known to law enforcement and those receiving victim services, and identify underserved groups of crime victims. Data presented from the 15 states which currently report to NIBRS can assist victim service providers to identify patterns of crime and victimization that can justify the need for additional resources and guide decisions on optimal resource development.
Abstract | HTML
 

OJP Publications

Improving Human Trafficking Victim Identification-Validation and Dissemination of a Screening Tool (June 2014) NIJ-Sponsored, Grant, 455 pages, NCJ 246712. This guide provides users with recommendations on how to build trust with potential victims, maintain confidentiality, and use the tool correctly. When properly used, the tool could give victim service providers, law enforcement and legal, healthcare, and social service providers with a standard means of identifying victims of human trafficking.
Abstract | PDF
 
Screening for Human Trafficking: Guidelines for Administering the Trafficking Victim Identification Tool (TVIT) (June 2014) NIJ-Sponsored, Grant, 37 pages, NCJ 246713. This tool is designed for victim service providers and other providers to assist in identifying victims of human trafficking. Developed over the last seven years by the Vera Institute of Justice in collaboration with 11 victim service organizations in California, Colorado, New York, Texas and Washington, this NIJ-funded tool has been validated with a diverse sample of potential victims of trafficking and found reliable in predicting labor and sex trafficking.
Abstract | PDF
 
Untested Evidence in Sexual Assault Cases (February 2013) NIJ-Sponsored, 6 pages, NCJ 241356. In this article from the Sexual Assault Report™, NIJ staff member Nancy Ritter explores: whether every sexual assault kit (SAK) should be tested every kit - even ones that are 25 years old; should priority be given to certain kits, and if so, how do we decide; and how to handle cases in which the alleged perpetrator is already known. The article also explains where the weak spots are in collecting, storing, and testing kits; why the police might not send sexual assault kits to be tested; and what early evidence is showing about complex issues such as victim notification.
Abstract | PDF
 
Practical Implications of Current Intimate Partner Violence Research for Victim Advocates and Service Providers (January 2013) NIJ-Sponsored, Grant, 260 pages, NCJ 244348. This report expands and enhances the 2009 report titled "Practical Implications of Current Domestic Violence Research: For Law Enforcement, Prosecutors and Judges" to address the practical implications of current domestic violence research for victim advocates and service providers.
Abstract | PDF
 
No More Rights Without Remedies: An Impact Evaluation of the National Crime Victim Law Institute's Victims' Rights Clinics, Final Technical Report (2012) NIJ-Sponsored, Grant, 125 pages, NCJ 241752. This grant report evaluates the National Crime Victim Law Institute's (NCVLI) victims' rights clinics. The clinics were designed to increase awareness of victims' rights among criminal justice professionals and to respond to violations of rights through legal advocacy. The current report examines the clinics' impact on the expansion of rights for victims, on court officials' attitudes toward victims' rights, on the extent to which victims' rights are honored in the criminal disposition process, and on the treatment of victims' rights in the print media. It also includes a discussion of sustainability of the clinics.
Abstract | PDF
 

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Related Resources

OVC Funded Resources

9/11 Remembrance: Resources Compiled by OVC
This section of the OVC site contains a list of government and nonprofit organizations, programs, publications, and events related to September 11th and victims of terrorism. Created for the observance of the 10th anniversary of September 11, 2001, these resources continue to provide useful information and assistance to victim service professionals and the public.
 
Criminal Crisis Response Initiative (CCRI)
Funded by OVC, CCRI is a multidisciplinary training and technical assistance program designed to help communities meet the needs of the victims of an act of criminal mass victimization.
 
Identity Theft Victim Assistance Network Project
The Maryland Crime Victims' Resource Center, Inc. (MCVRC), with funding from OVC, this project seeks to improve the response (infrastructure, training, outreach tools, and direct victim assistance services) to victims of identity theft nationwide.
 
Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network (RAINN)
RAINN operates a 24-hour telephone hotline (1-800-656-HOPE) and an Online Hotline for victims of sexual assault. The secure web-based hotline provides a safe, secure, and anonymous place for victims to get help online. RAINN also works to promote education and prevention of sexual assault, compiles and shares links to Legal Resources, including the State Mandatory Regulations regarding children and the elderly.
 
The Use of Technology to Stalk: An Online Course
Produced by the Stalking Resource Center of the National Center for Victims of Crime with funding from OVC, this free self-paced, interactive online training will help increase the ability of criminal justice professionals and victim service providers to recognize how stalkers use technology and, ultimately, enhance their ability to work with victims of stalking. This course highlights: how stalkers use technologies to locate, harass, and surveil their victims; steps to assist in investigating stalking crimes; and how to support victims of stalking.
 

Federal Resources

Corporation for National and Community Service (CNS)
The Corporation for National and Community Service provides opportunities for Americans of all ages and backgrounds to engage in service that addresses the Nation's educational, public safety, environmental, and other human needs to achieve direct and demonstrable results and to encourage all Americans to engage in such service. In doing so, the corporation will foster civic responsibility, strengthen the ties that bind us together as a people, and provide educational opportunity for those who make a substantial commitment to service.
 
Department of Defense (DoD) Safe Helpline
The Department of Defense (DoD) Safe Helpline is a confidential crisis support service for adult service members of the DoD community affected by sexual assault. Operated by the Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network (RAINN), the helpline provides live, one-on-one expert advice and information 24/7.
 
Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)
FEMA works in conjunction with different agencies to provide emergency and disaster relief. FEMA's web site offers disaster news and emergency management information.
 
U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ): Community Relations Service (CRS)
CRS, the "peacemaker" arm of the U.S. Department of Justice for community conflicts and tensions, provides expert guidance and assistance to community officials and civic leaders to help resolve and prevent racial and ethnic conflict, violence, and civil disorders.
 
World Trade Center Health Program
This program monitors, screens, treats and supports responders who responded to the disaster site at the World Trade Center in New York City and who may have been affected physically or mentally by their service. The site is designed to provide information related to all aspects of the World Trade Center Health Program, to highlight new developments in the program as they occur, and to help individuals find information of particular interest for them.
 

Non-Governmental Resources

American Red Cross
In addition to domestic disaster relief, the American Red Cross offers compassionate services in five other areas: community services that help the needy; support and comfort for military members and their families; the collection, processing and distribution of lifesaving blood and blood products; educational programs that promote health and safety; and international relief and development programs.
 
Anti-Phishing Working Group
APWG is focused on eliminating the fraud and identity theft that result from phishing, pharming and email spoofing of all types.
 
European Forum for Restorative Justice
This non-governmental organization's general aim is to help establish and develop victim-offender mediation and other restorative justice practices throughout Europe.
 
International Critical Incident Stress Foundation, Inc. (ICISF)
The mission of ICISF is to provide leadership, education, training, consultation, and support services in comprehensive crisis intervention and disaster behavioral health services to the emergency response professions, other organizations, and communities worldwide.
 
National Network to End Domestic Violence (NNEDV)
NNEDV works closely with domestic violence coalitions, allied organization, and individuals to understand the ongoing and emerging needs of domestic violence victims and advocacy programs.
 

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Web Forum Discussions

Each month the Nation's experts answer your questions about best practices in victim services. Below are upcoming and most recent session discussions in this topic:

On Mar 25 2015 at 2:00PM, Katie Monroe, Senior Advocate for National Partnerships at the Innocence Project, and Karin Ho, brings over 30 years combined experience as a victim advocate in the sexual assault, domestic violence and postconviction corrections field, hosted a discussion on Postconviction Exonerations and Victim Assistance

On Feb 25 2015 at 2:00PM, Jennifer Burkmire, advocate for children and a contract consultant for nonprofit organizations that provide social services, and Cynthia King, President of King & Associates, Inc, hosted a discussion on Developing an Effective Multidisciplinary Team

On Jan 28 2015 at 2:00PM, Jean Bruggeman, Esq., OVC Human Tafficking Fellow, and Rebecca Bender, Survivor and Founder of Rebecca Bender Ministries, hosted a discussion on Engaging Survivors in Combating Human Trafficking

On Dec 8 2014 at 2:00PM, Carole Warshaw, MD, Director, National Center on Domestic Violence, Trauma & Mental Health, and Gabriella Grant, Director, California Center of Excellence for Trauma Informed Care, hosted a discussion on Incorporating Trauma-Informed Care Principles Into Practice

On Nov 19 2014 at 2:00PM, Roe Bubar, J.D, Associate Professor at Colorado State University, and Leila Goldsmith, J.D., Child Advocacy Coordinator with the Tulalip Tribes of Washington, hosted a discussion on Forensic Interviewing in Tribal Communities


FAQs

What is the difference between compensation and restitution?
Restitution is court-ordered and compensation is provided by the Victim Compensation Program in each... Read More

What type of protection does the U.S. Department of Justice provide to trafficking victims?
Information for trafficking victims is available in the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) brochu... Read More

How do I add my program/organization to the Online Directory of Crime Victim Services?
Please visit the Get Posted section of the Office for Victims of Crime (OVC) Online Directory of Cri... Read More

What is victim assistance?
Each year, states and territories receive Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) funds to support community-bas... Read More

What is the Online Directory of Crime Victim Services?
The Online Directory of Crime Victim Services is a Web-enabled, online resource sponsored by the Off... Read More

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Funding

FY 2015 Enhanced Collaborative Model to Combat Human Trafficking (PDF 411 kb)
Deadline: 05/11/2015
OVC and BJA will award between $600,000 and $900,000 to law enforcement agencies and victim service providers to work collaboratively to develop and enhance multidisciplinary human trafficking task forces that combat sex and labor trafficking of foreign nationals and U.S. citizens of all sexes and ages. Eligible applicants are law enforcement agencies and victim service providers who submit separate but coordinated proposals that outline how this funding will be used to implement the human trafficking task force specified within the application. Those applying are urged to begin in advance of the May 11, 2015, deadline.


2016 National Crime Victims’ Rights Week Resource Guide (PDF 168 kb)
Deadline: 04/29/2015
OVC will award one cooperative agreement of up to $300,000 to conceptualize, develop, and produce a comprehensive kit that will serve as a resource for the victim services field to support efforts to heighten public awareness of crime victim issues nationwide during National Crime Victims’ Rights Week in April 2016, and throughout the year. Eligible applicants are nonprofit organizations, including tribal nonprofit organizations, faith and community-based organizations, and public agencies. Those applying are urged to begin in advance of the April 29, 2015, deadline.

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National Calendar of Crime Victim Assistance-Related Events
Upcoming Event(s)
2015 International Conference on Sexual Assault, Domestic Violence and Campus Responses
New Orleans, LA
04/07/2015-04/09/2015

National Crime Victims' Service Awards Ceremony
Washington, DC
04/21/2015-04/21/2015

Online Directory of Crime Victims Services.