Historically, the goals of correctional agencies have been to protect the public, deter criminal behavior, and rehabilitate offenders. Although correctional agencies have traditionally focused on offenders, they have begun to view crime victims as their constituents as well. Correctional agencies now raise awareness about crime victim issues through programs such as victim impact classes and provide direct victim assistance through programs like victim-offender dialogue. They also play an important role in enforcing victims’ rights by notifying them about the status of offenders and enforcing the collection of restitution on victims’ behalf. Efforts are also being made to raise awareness and educate correctional staff on victims’ rights and issues. Many correctional agencies recognize that, despite their best efforts, the offenders they supervise may become victims of crime while under their supervision and will need their assistance and support.
The following resources provide information about victim services in corrections.