Office for Victims of Crime - Justice for Victims. Justice for All
Justice for Victims. Justice for All
Facebook     Twitter     You TubeEventsDirectoryE-Mail Updates
skip navigation
Browse By Topic

Victim and Witness Assistance

  • Publications (88)
  • Resources (36)
  • Forum Discussions (5)
  • FAQs (26)
  • Funding (17)
  • View All

Victim and witness assistance programs ensure that victims and witnesses of crimes are treated with fairness and respect, afforded their rights, and provided with the services they need to help ease the impact of victimization. Victim and witness assistance services include, but are not limited to, crisis intervention, emergency shelter and transportation, counseling, and criminal justice advocacy. All states and most territories receive annual state victim assistance program formula grants that must be used to support local community-based organizations and public agencies that provide services directly to victims.

The following resources provide additional information about victim and witness assistance programs and services.


OVC and OVC-Sponsored Publications

Keys to Collaboration Between Hospital-based Violence Intervention and Cure Violence Programs (2018) OVC-Sponsored, Grant, 16 pages, NCJ 251823.
The Healing Justice Alliance, with funding support from OVC, published this report to help guide communities that are implementing, or are interested in implementing, both hospital-based violence intervention and cure violence programs to address violence impacting young males.
Abstract | PDF
 
Sexual Assault Response Team (SART) Toolkit (September 2018) OVC-Sponsored, Grant, 0 pages, NCJ 252125.
This second edition of the SART Toolkit provides resources for communities wanting to develop SARTs — coordinated teams of people who serve victims of sexual assault — and for communities wanting to improve their SART responses. The toolkit reviews the basics, lays out the steps involved building a SART, outlines strategic planning for SART operations, and describes how to remain focused on serving victims of crime.
Abstract | HTML
 
Vision 21: National Resource Center for Reaching Victims (August 2018) OVC, Fact Sheet, OVC Fact Sheets, 2 pages, NCJ 251958.
This fact sheet describes the OVC-funded National Resource Center for Reaching Victims project. The center seeks to be one-stop shop where providers, policymakers, and other professionals will be able to obtain information and expert guidance to enhance their capacity to identify, reach, and serve all victims, especially those from communities that too often have less access to healing services and avenues to justice.
Abstract | PDF
Part Of the OVC Fact Sheets Series
 
Vision 21: Center for Victim Research (August 2018) OVC, Fact Sheet, OVC Fact Sheets, 2 pages, NCJ 251959.
In response to the victim assistance field’s call for increased statistical data, evidence-based practices, and program evaluation, OVC funded the creation of the Center for Victim Research. This fact sheet describes how the Center is tool for victim service providers and researchers to connect and share knowledge, supports the field in two ways. It facilitates access to victim research and data while improving the utility of research and data collection to crime victim services nationwide.
Abstract | PDF
Part Of the OVC Fact Sheets Series
 
Research Brief: Homicide Co-Victimization (July 2018) OVC-Sponsored, Grant, 4 pages, NCJ 251953.
This fact sheet provides a comprehensive review of research and practice on homicide co-victimization. This research brief describes how the evidence base for homicide co-victimization is growing, while highlighting key areas where further research is needed.
Abstract | PDF
 

OJP Publications

Social Support Can Diminish Negative Effects of Elder Abuse (December 2017) NIJ-Sponsored, Grant, 2 pages, NCJ 251468.
This article summarizes the findings of a series of studies that have identified the critical role of social support in preventing and ameliorating the adverse effects of elder abuse. These research findings may help inform how victim service providers and allied professionals respond to victims of elder abuse.
Abstract | PDF
 
Enhancing Police Responses to Children Exposed to Violence: A Toolkit for Law Enforcement (February 2017) OJJDP-Sponsored, Report, 68 pages, NCJ 250768.
This toolkit provides practical resources to assist law enforcement agencies in building or enhancing effective operational responses to children exposed to violence (with or without a mental health partner).
Abstract | PDF
 
Examining Criminal Justice Responses to and Help-Seeking Patterns of Sexual Violence Survivors With Disabilities (June 2016) NIJ-Sponsored, Grant, 87 pages, NCJ 250196.
The goal of this study used is to better understand the criminal justice experience of persons with disabilities that report a sexual assault or rape to the authorities. Results suggest that current criminal justice structures are not sufficient to provide support for one of the highest-risk adult populations for sexual assault and victimization in the U.S.
Abstract | PDF
 
Detroit Sexual Assault Kit (SAK) Action Research Project (ARP), Final Report (February 2015) NIJ-Sponsored, Grant, 551 pages, NCJ 248680.
This report documents the Detroit Sexual Assault Action-Research Project, in which a multidisciplinary team looked at the issue of a large number of sexual assault kits (SAKs) that had not been sent to a crime lab for DNA-testing. The team identified the underlying factors that contributed to the issue; developed and evaluated a plan for testing the SAKs; and created and evaluated protocols for notifying victims of the results of the testing. The report also offers practitioner-friendly resources, including how to create victim-notification protocols.
Abstract | PDF
 
Understanding the Organization, Operation, and Victimization Process of Labor Trafficking in the United States (October 2014) NIJ-Sponsored, Grant, 306 pages, NCJ 248461.
This report explores patterns of labor trafficking in the U.S., and found that trafficking occurs in multiple industries, including agriculture, hospitality, construction, and restaurants. The report verified that labor trafficking usually goes unreported, and law enforcement often have difficulty distinguishing labor trafficking from other workplace exploitation. Policy and practice implications of this research for federal and local law enforcement and victims' service agencies are outlined.
Abstract | PDF
 

Back to Top

Victim and witness assistance programs ensure that victims and witnesses of crimes are treated with fairness and respect, afforded their rights, and provided with the services they need to help ease the impact of victimization. Victim and witness assistance services include, but are not limited to, crisis intervention, emergency shelter and transportation, counseling, and criminal justice advocacy. All states and most territories receive annual state victim assistance program formula grants that must be used to support local community-based organizations and public agencies that provide services directly to victims.

The following resources provide additional information about victim and witness assistance programs and services.


Victim and witness assistance programs ensure that victims and witnesses of crimes are treated with fairness and respect, afforded their rights, and provided with the services they need to help ease the impact of victimization. Victim and witness assistance services include, but are not limited to, crisis intervention, emergency shelter and transportation, counseling, and criminal justice advocacy. All states and most territories receive annual state victim assistance program formula grants that must be used to support local community-based organizations and public agencies that provide services directly to victims.

The following resources provide additional information about victim and witness assistance programs and services.


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 Nov 16 2016 at 2:00PM, Harlan Pruden, member of the Cree Nation and Managing Editor of TwoSpiritJournal.com, and Elton Naswood, of the Near to the Water People Clan and member of the Community Expert Advisory Council for the Indigenous HIV/AIDS Research Training , hosted a discussion on Serving Two-Spirit/LGBTQ Victims in Tribal Communities

On Oct 19 2016 at 2:00PM, Dana DeHart, Ph.D., Research Professor & Assistant Dean for Research at the University of South Carolina’s College of Social Work, and Angie McCown, Director, Texas Department of Criminal Justice’s Victim Services Division, hosted a discussion on Model Standards for Serving Victims and Survivors of Crime

On Sep 27 2016 at 2:00PM, Krista Flannigan, J.D., Director, Institute for Crime Victim Research & Policy at Florida State University, and Karen Thomas, President of the Connections Training Group, LLC, hosted a discussion on Serving Victims of Mass Violence

On Sep 14 2016 at 2:00PM, Donna Barry, APN, FN-CSA, DNP, has been the Director of the University Health Center at Montclair State University, and Anthony Walker, former Chief of Police for Norfolk State University, hosted a discussion on Campus Services for Victims of Sexual Assault

On Jul 20 2016 at 2:00PM, Merry O'Brien, M.S.W., the Network for Victim Recovery of DC’s Identity Theft Assistance, and Paula Pierce, J.D., former Manager of Hotline Services for Texas Legal Services Center, hosted a discussion on Serving Victims of Financial Fraud and Fraud Prevention

Victim and witness assistance programs ensure that victims and witnesses of crimes are treated with fairness and respect, afforded their rights, and provided with the services they need to help ease the impact of victimization. Victim and witness assistance services include, but are not limited to, crisis intervention, emergency shelter and transportation, counseling, and criminal justice advocacy. All states and most territories receive annual state victim assistance program formula grants that must be used to support local community-based organizations and public agencies that provide services directly to victims.

The following resources provide additional information about victim and witness assistance programs and services.


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

I am a crime victim, how can I get help?
Help in your area is available from your State/Local Victim Compensation and Assistance programs. As... Read More

I would like to apply for a Professional Development Scholarship. Where can I find the application?
Visit the Professional Development Scholarship Program section of the OVC TTAC website for specific ... Read More

How do I check on the status of my scholarship application?
To check on the status of your scholarship application, contact the OVC Training and Technical Assis... Read More

When may I submit my nomination for the National Crime Victims' Service Awards?
Nominations for the 2019 National Crime Victims' Service Awards are now closed. For more information... Read More

More FAQs

Victim and witness assistance programs ensure that victims and witnesses of crimes are treated with fairness and respect, afforded their rights, and provided with the services they need to help ease the impact of victimization. Victim and witness assistance services include, but are not limited to, crisis intervention, emergency shelter and transportation, counseling, and criminal justice advocacy. All states and most territories receive annual state victim assistance program formula grants that must be used to support local community-based organizations and public agencies that provide services directly to victims.

The following resources provide additional information about victim and witness assistance programs and services.


FY 2019 Tribal Victim Services Set-Aside Program (PDF 530 kb)
Deadline: 08/16/2019
The overall goal of this program is to provide support to tribal communities to improve services for victims of crime. This program will support a comprehensive range of activities to address the needs of a wide variety of crime victims in tribal communities. Apply under the following Purpose Areas (PAs). PA 1 Establishment of a New Victim Service Program: Applicants that have no existing victim services program, including applicants that do not have programs and are going to coordinate with others to provide services to them. PA 2 Coordination and Expansion of Existing Victim Service Program: The goal for applicants under this PA is to become more victim-centered, culturally competent, more comprehensive, and improve coordination with likely partners. View change to pages 1, 3, 10, 12, & 35 at www.ovc.gov/grants/pdftxt/FY19-VSSA-Solicitation-Updates.pdf. OVC will conduct two pre-application webinars on June 20, 2019, and June 27, 2019. Register at www.ovc.gov/grants/webinars.html.


FY 2019 Law Enforcement-Based Victim Specialist Program (PDF 388 kb)
Deadline: 07/25/2019
This program will develop or enhance crime victim specialist programs within law enforcement agencies to better support victims through the criminal justice process including by connecting them with community-based direct victim services programs to more quickly and more effectively serve them. Funding under this program will support an estimated 80 victim specialist grants to state, tribal, and/or local law enforcement agencies to hire victim services staff to develop new programs or enhance existing law enforcement-based victim specialist programs. OVC conducted a pre-application webinar on June 6, 2019, and a recording and transcript of this webinar are available at www.ovc.gov/grants/webinars.html. Apply by July 25, 2019.


FY 2019 Field-Generated Solutions for Tribal & Non-Tribal Communities to Improve Services for Victims of Crime (PDF 420 kb)
Deadline: 07/24/2019
The overarching goal of this program is to support victims of crime and to bridge gaps in services to victims. Applicants may apply for one or more of the following purpose areas (PAs): PA 1: Innovative Programs to Fill Gaps in Tribal Crime Victim Services, PA 2: Innovations in Telehealth, PA 3: Improving Responses to Victims of Burglary, PA 4: Improving the Ordering & Collecting of Restitution for Victims, and PA 5: Other Innovative Programs to Fill Gaps in Crime Victim Services. OVC will conduct a pre-application webinar on June 25, at 1:00 p.m. e.t. Register at www.ovc.gov/grants/webinars.html. Apply by July 24, 2019.


FY 2019 Direct Services to Support Victims of Human Trafficking (PDF 572 kb)
Deadline: 07/19/2019
This solicitation will provide funding for direct services to victims of sex trafficking and labor trafficking, as well as for efforts to increase the capacity of communities to respond to human trafficking through the development of interagency partnerships, professional training, and public awareness activities. Applicants may apply for one or more of the following purpose areas (PAs) and focus areas (FAs): PA 1: Comprehensive Services for Victims of All Forms of Human Trafficking which has 3 FAs (FA 1. Building Capacity to Provide Comprehensive Services, FA 2. Sustaining Capacity to Provide Comprehensive Services to Victims of All Forms of Human Trafficking, and FA 3. Comprehensive Services and Partnership With Enhanced Collaborative Model Human Trafficking Task Forces), and Purpose Area 2: Specialized Services. OVC conducted a pre-application webinar on June 14, 2019, and a recording and transcript of this webinar are available at www.ovc.gov/grants/webinars.html.


FY 2019 Discretionary Training and Technical Assistance Program for VOCA Victim Assistance Grantees (PDF 390 kb)
Deadline: 07/18/2019
The purpose of this solicitation is to provide training and technical assistance to VOCA Victim Assistance service providers and others who work with victims of crime. Activities funded through this program may include, but are not limited to: the establishment or enhancement of state victim assistance academies, statewide training initiatives, crime victim-related conferences, basic training for new programs, or scholarships to attend conferences and/or training. Eligible applicants are limited to state administering agencies for the Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) Victim Assistance Program Formula Grants. OVC conducted a pre-application webinar on June 17, 2019, and a recording and transcript of this webinar are available at www.ovc.gov/grants/webinars.html. Apply by July 18, 2019.


FY 2019 Using Telehealth to Improve Care, Access and Quality of Sexual Assault Forensic Exams (PDF 831 kb)
Deadline: 07/17/2019
OVC is seeking applications for funding to enhance the care for sexual assault victims, improve access and quality of forensic examinations, and expand access to the expertise of Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners (SANEs) through telehealth technology for communities with limited access to trained SANEs. Apply under one of the following two purpose areas. Purpose Area 1: State/Tribal/Regional Demonstration Sites - the primary goal of this program is to increase the number of highly trained, experienced SANEs and other medical forensic examiners and provide high-quality care for victims of sexual assault. Purpose Area 2: Technical Assistance Provider - the successful applicant under this program will provide technical assistance to the Purpose Area 1 sites during the planning and implementation of a telehealth program. Apply by July 17, 2019.


FY 2019 Transforming America’s Response to Elder Abuse: Mobilizing Attorneys for Older Victims of Abuse & Financial Exploitation (PDF 480 kb)
Deadline: 07/15/2019
This program will provide increased legal services for older victims of crime (particularly in rural areas), educate attorneys and allied professionals about the needs of older victims, and increase coordinated multidisciplinary responses in supporting older victims of crime. OVC will conduct a pre-application webinar on June 24, 2019, at 1:00 p.m. e.t. Register at www.ovc.gov/grants/webinars.html. Apply by July 15, 2019.


FY 2019 Project Beacon: Increasing Services for Urban American Indian and Alaska Native Victims of Sex Trafficking (PDF 229 kb)
Deadline: 07/15/2019
OVC will make awards to increase the quantity and quality of services currently available to American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) victims of sex trafficking who reside in urban areas. Apply under one of the following purpose areas (PAs). PA 1: Direct Services: Applicants may request funding to: develop or enhance their organizational capacity to provide services to urban AI/AN victims of sex trafficking; develop and sustain collaborative partnerships; conduct community outreach and awareness activities; and provide training to other stakeholders on how to meet the needs of urban AI/AN victims of sex trafficking. PA 2: Training and Technical Assistance (TTA): Applicants may request funding to provide capacity-building TTA to successful grantees under Purpose Area 1. OVC conducted a pre-application webinar on June 19, 2019, and a recording and transcript of this webinar are available at www.ovc.gov/grants/webinars.html. Apply by July 15, 2019.


FY 2019 Specialized Human Trafficking Training and Technical Assistance and Resource Development (PDF 888 kb)
Deadline: 07/10/2019
This program seeks to: (1) enhance the quality of services available to assist victims of human trafficking by providing specialized training and technical assistance (TTA) to stakeholders; (2) develop resources that commemorate the 20th anniversary of the passage of the Trafficking Victim Protection Act to raise public awareness, promote community outreach, and create educational activities to address human trafficking; and (3) develop a resource to improve the response to victims of human trafficking. Applicants may apply for one or more of the following purpose areas (PAs). PA 1: TTA on Crime Victim Compensation for Victims of Human Trafficking, PA 2: TTA on Labor Trafficking, PA 3: TTA on State-Level Financial Remedies for Human Trafficking Victims, PA 4: Resource Development on Public Awareness for the 20th Anniversary of the Trafficking Victim Protection Act, and PA 5: Resource Development on Standards of Care for Human Trafficking Victims. Apply by July 10, 2019.


FY 2019 Transforming Family Justice Center Services: Creating New Pathways of Hope and Healing for Polyvictims (PDF 502 kb)
Deadline: 07/08/2019
OVC seeks to expand the work and lessons learned from OVC's FY 2016 demonstration initiative, "A Pathway to Justice, Healing, and Hope: Addressing Polyvictimization in a Family Justice Center." Purpose Area 1: OVC expects to fund up to six FJCs or similar co-located service model agencies to: implement the validated assessment tool (see Appendix A); increase partnerships with traditional and non-traditional FJC services to serve identified polyvictims more holistically; expand case management services to include a thorough understanding of the specific needs of the survivors; and build capacity within their communities to leverage existing and new resources for crime victims. Purpose Area 2: OVC anticipates funding one organization to provide comprehensive technical assistance to the Purpose Area 1 sites selected under this program. OVC conducted a pre-application webinar on May 20, 2019, and a recording and transcript of this webinar are available at www.ovc.gov/grants/webinars.html.


FY 2019 VOCA Victim Assistance (PDF 452 kb)
Deadline: 07/08/2019
Under this formula grant program, OVC will award each eligible state victim assistance program an annual grant to support eligible crime victim assistance programs in that state or territory. Funds under this program shall be used by states and territories to support eligible crime victim assistance programs that provide direct services to crime victims with the following exception: states and territories may retain up to 5 percent of their total grant for administrative and training purposes. Apply by 5:00 p.m. e.t. on July 8, 2019.


FY 2019 Building State Technology Capacity and Elder Abuse Hotlines (PDF 421 kb)
Deadline: 07/08/2019
This program seeks ambitious yet viable proposals from Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) Formula State Administrating Agencies. Successful applicants will implement visionary statewide technology programs to enhance victims’ access to services, foster innovation and efficiency in the provision of services, improve the quality of services, and improve the accessibility and responsiveness of victim service organizations. OVC conducted a pre-application webinar on June 11, 2019, and a recording and transcript of this webinar are available at www.ovc.gov/grants/webinars.html. Apply by July 8, 2019.


FY 2019 Improving Outcomes for Child and Youth Victims of Human Trafficking (PDF 518 kb)
Deadline: 07/01/2019
The purpose of this program is to improve outcomes for children and youth who are victims of labor and sex trafficking by integrating human trafficking policy and programming at the state or tribal jurisdiction level and enhancing coordinated, multidisciplinary, and statewide approaches to serving trafficked youth. Applicants should identify the state or tribe’s greatest barriers to identifying and assisting child and youth victims of sex and labor trafficking and/or to investigating and prosecuting these trafficking cases, and propose a program to systematically address those barriers. OVC is particularly interested in applications from states with a high geographic need for this program. OVC conducted a pre-application webinar on June 13, 2019, and a recording and transcript of this webinar are available at www.ovc.gov/grants/webinars.html. Apply by July 1, 2019.


FY 2019 Field-Generated Innovations in Assistance to Victims of Human Trafficking (PDF 428 kb)
Deadline: 06/27/2019
To meet the needs of a rapidly evolving anti-trafficking field, and to best serve victims of human trafficking, OVC is seeking innovative ideas to enhance identification of and services for victims. Proposed projects should develop or enhance promising practices, models, and victim-centered programs, or apply them in innovative ways, to build the capacity of victim service providers to close gaps in assisting all victims of sex and labor trafficking in the United States. OVC conducted a pre-application webinar on May 9, 2019, and a recording and transcript of this webinar are available at www.ovc.gov/grants/webinars.html. Apply by June 27, 2019.


FY 2019 Enhancing Language and Other Access to Services Program (PDF 457 kb)
Deadline: 06/26/2019
This program seeks to enhance language access services for crime victims to break down barriers that prevent many individuals from reporting crimes and accessing the services they need after crime victimization. Funding will support the provision of direct services, the development of language access plans, and will expand the capacity of community-based organizations within linguistically specific communities to address the needs of victims of all types of crime. View a change to page 6 at www.ovc.gov/grants/pdftxt/FY19-EASP-Solicitation-Updates-508.pdf. OVC conducted a pre-application webinar on May 14, 2019, and a recording and transcript of this webinar are available at www.ovc.gov/grants/webinars.html. Apply by June 26, 2019.


FY 2019 Advancing the Use of Technology to Assist Victims of Crime (PDF 395 kb)
Deadline: 06/25/2019
Through this program, OVC will support national-scope initiatives and regional initiatives (that can be replicated nationally) to maximize the use of technology to improve and increase access to crime victim services. Projects could include, but are not limited to: (1) Development of new national app(s) or creation of another technology platform designed to serve victims of crime. (2) Development of regionally focused app(s) or creation of another technology platform designed to serve victims of crime. (3) Expansion or enhancement of existing services and/or hotlines on digital, online, or text platforms or an app that uses technology to provide services, referrals, tools, and information to victims of crime. Apply by June 25, 2019.


FY 2019 Guidance for Invited Applications for Antiterrorism and Emergency Assistance Program for Crime Victim Compensation and/or Assistance (PDF 473 kb)
Deadline: Open
The Antiterrorism and Emergency Assistance Program (AEAP) is a mechanism by which the Director of OVC may award supplemental crime victim compensation and assistance to respond to an act of domestic terrorism or mass criminal violence. The criminal act has to be of sufficient magnitude that the jurisdiction cannot provide needed services to victims of the incident with existing resources and it places an undue financial hardship on the jurisdiction’s ability to respond to victims of other crimes in a timely and comprehensive manner. This is not a competitive solicitation. Only after OVC has consulted with an eligible organization can an application be submitted.

More Funding Opportunities

Victim and witness assistance programs ensure that victims and witnesses of crimes are treated with fairness and respect, afforded their rights, and provided with the services they need to help ease the impact of victimization. Victim and witness assistance services include, but are not limited to, crisis intervention, emergency shelter and transportation, counseling, and criminal justice advocacy. All states and most territories receive annual state victim assistance program formula grants that must be used to support local community-based organizations and public agencies that provide services directly to victims.

The following resources provide additional information about victim and witness assistance programs and services.


Publications

OVC and OVC-Sponsored Publications

Keys to Collaboration Between Hospital-based Violence Intervention and Cure Violence Programs (2018) OVC-Sponsored, Grant, 16 pages, NCJ 251823. The Healing Justice Alliance, with funding support from OVC, published this report to help guide communities that are implementing, or are interested in implementing, both hospital-based violence intervention and cure violence programs to address violence impacting young males.
Abstract | PDF
 
Sexual Assault Response Team (SART) Toolkit (September 2018) OVC-Sponsored, Grant, 0 pages, NCJ 252125. This second edition of the SART Toolkit provides resources for communities wanting to develop SARTs — coordinated teams of people who serve victims of sexual assault — and for communities wanting to improve their SART responses. The toolkit reviews the basics, lays out the steps involved building a SART, outlines strategic planning for SART operations, and describes how to remain focused on serving victims of crime.
Abstract | HTML
 
Vision 21: National Resource Center for Reaching Victims (August 2018) OVC, Fact Sheet, OVC Fact Sheets, 2 pages, NCJ 251958. This fact sheet describes the OVC-funded National Resource Center for Reaching Victims project. The center seeks to be one-stop shop where providers, policymakers, and other professionals will be able to obtain information and expert guidance to enhance their capacity to identify, reach, and serve all victims, especially those from communities that too often have less access to healing services and avenues to justice.
Abstract | PDF
Part Of the OVC Fact Sheets Series
 
Vision 21: Center for Victim Research (August 2018) OVC, Fact Sheet, OVC Fact Sheets, 2 pages, NCJ 251959. In response to the victim assistance field’s call for increased statistical data, evidence-based practices, and program evaluation, OVC funded the creation of the Center for Victim Research. This fact sheet describes how the Center is tool for victim service providers and researchers to connect and share knowledge, supports the field in two ways. It facilitates access to victim research and data while improving the utility of research and data collection to crime victim services nationwide.
Abstract | PDF
Part Of the OVC Fact Sheets Series
 
Research Brief: Homicide Co-Victimization (July 2018) OVC-Sponsored, Grant, 4 pages, NCJ 251953. This fact sheet provides a comprehensive review of research and practice on homicide co-victimization. This research brief describes how the evidence base for homicide co-victimization is growing, while highlighting key areas where further research is needed.
Abstract | PDF
 

OJP Publications

Social Support Can Diminish Negative Effects of Elder Abuse (December 2017) NIJ-Sponsored, Grant, 2 pages, NCJ 251468. This article summarizes the findings of a series of studies that have identified the critical role of social support in preventing and ameliorating the adverse effects of elder abuse. These research findings may help inform how victim service providers and allied professionals respond to victims of elder abuse.
Abstract | PDF
 
Enhancing Police Responses to Children Exposed to Violence: A Toolkit for Law Enforcement (February 2017) OJJDP-Sponsored, Report, 68 pages, NCJ 250768. This toolkit provides practical resources to assist law enforcement agencies in building or enhancing effective operational responses to children exposed to violence (with or without a mental health partner).
Abstract | PDF
 
Examining Criminal Justice Responses to and Help-Seeking Patterns of Sexual Violence Survivors With Disabilities (June 2016) NIJ-Sponsored, Grant, 87 pages, NCJ 250196. The goal of this study used is to better understand the criminal justice experience of persons with disabilities that report a sexual assault or rape to the authorities. Results suggest that current criminal justice structures are not sufficient to provide support for one of the highest-risk adult populations for sexual assault and victimization in the U.S.
Abstract | PDF
 
Detroit Sexual Assault Kit (SAK) Action Research Project (ARP), Final Report (February 2015) NIJ-Sponsored, Grant, 551 pages, NCJ 248680. This report documents the Detroit Sexual Assault Action-Research Project, in which a multidisciplinary team looked at the issue of a large number of sexual assault kits (SAKs) that had not been sent to a crime lab for DNA-testing. The team identified the underlying factors that contributed to the issue; developed and evaluated a plan for testing the SAKs; and created and evaluated protocols for notifying victims of the results of the testing. The report also offers practitioner-friendly resources, including how to create victim-notification protocols.
Abstract | PDF
 
Understanding the Organization, Operation, and Victimization Process of Labor Trafficking in the United States (October 2014) NIJ-Sponsored, Grant, 306 pages, NCJ 248461. This report explores patterns of labor trafficking in the U.S., and found that trafficking occurs in multiple industries, including agriculture, hospitality, construction, and restaurants. The report verified that labor trafficking usually goes unreported, and law enforcement often have difficulty distinguishing labor trafficking from other workplace exploitation. Policy and practice implications of this research for federal and local law enforcement and victims' service agencies are outlined.
Abstract | PDF
 

Back to Top

Related Resources

OVC Funded Resources

Linking Systems of Care for Children and Youth Project
This project is designed to reach underserved children, youth, and families in Illinois, Montana, Ohio, and Virginia who are victims of crime. This demonstration product seeks to provide immediate and long-range services for through collaboration and coordination of systems of care and inform victim service providers and other stakeholders of the most effective strategies and programs to address the needs of this population.
 
National Mass Violence Victimization Resource Center
This OVC-funded initiative provides evidence-based information, training, and other resources for communities so they can effectively prepare for and respond to mass violence incidents.
 
Office for Victims of Crime (OVC): Human Trafficking
OVC’s human trafficking Web site contains a wide range of information including resources and research from the Federal Government, publications and products from OVC, local and national direct assistance information, and related funding opportunities for victims and survivors of human trafficking, victim service providers, law enforcement, and allied professionals.
 
Office for Victims of Crime Training and Technical Assistance Center (OVC TTAC): Tribal Victim Assistance
This OVC TTAC resource provides information and tools to support the efforts of tribal victim advocates, prosecutors, law enforcement officers, and others to develop a victim-centered response to crime victims in tribal communities.
 
Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) Administrators
This resource provides information and guidance to help improve the management of Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) funds. OVC will also periodically post notifications, updates, and resources for state VOCA administrators.
 

Federal Resources

Department of Defense (DoD): Victim and Witness Assistance Council (VWAC)
The Council's Web site offers information and links to assist victims, and witnesses to crimes on military installations. Resources include contact information for victim and witness assistance coordinators for the Coast Guard, Department of the Air Force, Department of the Army, Department of the Navy, Marine Corps, Office of the Secretary of Defense. Each branch of services has: 1) An interdisciplinary Victim and Witness Assistance Council; 2)a Family Advocacy Program designed to prevent and treat child and spouse abuse; and 3) a central repository for tracking notice of the status of offenders confined in military correctional facilities. In addition, local councils have been established at each major military installation to ensure that an interdisciplinary approach is followed by victim and witness service providers.
 
National Criminal Justice Reference Service (NCJRS)
Sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs, NCJRS offers information on victimology and victim assistance, criminal justice, juvenile justice, information to support research, policy, and program development worldwide. NCJRS supplies the victim services field with resources, publications, and program information. The NCJRS library collection includes more than 30,000 resources relevant to the field.
 
National Registry of Evidence-based Programs and Practices (NREPP)
NREPP is a searchable online registry of more than hundreds of interventions supporting mental health promotion, substance abuse prevention, and mental health and substance abuse treatment.
 
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA): Disaster Distress Helpline
The Disaster Distress Helpline is dedicated to providing year-round disaster crisis counseling. This toll free, multilingual, crisis support service is available 24/7 via telephone 800–985–5990 (for Spanish, press 2) and SMS (text 'TalkWithUs', or for Spanish, text 'Hablanos', to 66746) to residents in the U.S. and its territories who are experiencing emotional distress related to natural or man-made disasters.
 
U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ): Elder Justice Initiative
This site serves as a resource for victims of elder abuse and financial exploitation and their families, practitioners who serve them, law enforcement agencies and prosecutors, and researchers seeking to understand and address this silent epidemic plaguing our nation's elders. Victims and family members will find information about how to report and get assistance for victims of elder abuse and financial exploitation in all 50 states and the U.S. territories.
 

Non-Governmental Resources

National Adult Protective Services Association (NAPSA)
NAPSA provides state Adult Protective Services program administrators and staff with a forum for sharing information, solving problems, and improving the quality of services for victims of elder and vulnerable adult abuse.
 
National Clearinghouse on Abuse in Later Life (NCALL)
NCALL's mission is to eliminate abuse in later life by challenging beliefs, policies, practices and systems that allow abuse to occur and continue and to improve safety, services and support to victims through advocacy and education.
 
National Network of Hospital-based Violence Intervention Programs
Violence is preventable, and trauma centers and emergency rooms have a golden moment of opportunity at the hospital bedside to engage with a victim of violence and to stop the cycle of violence. The Network's purpose is to strengthen existing programs and help develop similar programs in communities across the country.
 
Shared Hope International
Shared Hope International is a worldwide effort to prevent and eradicate sex trafficking and slavery through education and public awareness.
 
Stalking Prevention, Awareness, and Resource Center
This national resource center provides resources and training for service providers, law enforcement, and other allied professionals to identify and respond to the crime of stalking. They also provide information on what to do if you are a victim of stalking.
 

Back to Top


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 Nov 16 2016 at 2:00PM, Harlan Pruden, member of the Cree Nation and Managing Editor of TwoSpiritJournal.com, and Elton Naswood, of the Near to the Water People Clan and member of the Community Expert Advisory Council for the Indigenous HIV/AIDS Research Training , hosted a discussion on Serving Two-Spirit/LGBTQ Victims in Tribal Communities

On Oct 19 2016 at 2:00PM, Dana DeHart, Ph.D., Research Professor & Assistant Dean for Research at the University of South Carolina’s College of Social Work, and Angie McCown, Director, Texas Department of Criminal Justice’s Victim Services Division, hosted a discussion on Model Standards for Serving Victims and Survivors of Crime

On Sep 27 2016 at 2:00PM, Krista Flannigan, J.D., Director, Institute for Crime Victim Research & Policy at Florida State University, and Karen Thomas, President of the Connections Training Group, LLC, hosted a discussion on Serving Victims of Mass Violence

On Sep 14 2016 at 2:00PM, Donna Barry, APN, FN-CSA, DNP, has been the Director of the University Health Center at Montclair State University, and Anthony Walker, former Chief of Police for Norfolk State University, hosted a discussion on Campus Services for Victims of Sexual Assault

On Jul 20 2016 at 2:00PM, Merry O'Brien, M.S.W., the Network for Victim Recovery of DC’s Identity Theft Assistance, and Paula Pierce, J.D., former Manager of Hotline Services for Texas Legal Services Center, hosted a discussion on Serving Victims of Financial Fraud and Fraud Prevention


FAQs

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

I am a crime victim, how can I get help?
Help in your area is available from your State/Local Victim Compensation and Assistance programs. As... Read More

I would like to apply for a Professional Development Scholarship. Where can I find the application?
Visit the Professional Development Scholarship Program section of the OVC TTAC website for specific ... Read More

How do I check on the status of my scholarship application?
To check on the status of your scholarship application, contact the OVC Training and Technical Assis... Read More

When may I submit my nomination for the National Crime Victims' Service Awards?
Nominations for the 2019 National Crime Victims' Service Awards are now closed. For more information... Read More

Back to Top


Funding

FY 2019 Tribal Victim Services Set-Aside Program (PDF 530 kb)
Deadline: 08/16/2019
The overall goal of this program is to provide support to tribal communities to improve services for victims of crime. This program will support a comprehensive range of activities to address the needs of a wide variety of crime victims in tribal communities. Apply under the following Purpose Areas (PAs). PA 1 Establishment of a New Victim Service Program: Applicants that have no existing victim services program, including applicants that do not have programs and are going to coordinate with others to provide services to them. PA 2 Coordination and Expansion of Existing Victim Service Program: The goal for applicants under this PA is to become more victim-centered, culturally competent, more comprehensive, and improve coordination with likely partners. View change to pages 1, 3, 10, 12, & 35 at www.ovc.gov/grants/pdftxt/FY19-VSSA-Solicitation-Updates.pdf. OVC will conduct two pre-application webinars on June 20, 2019, and June 27, 2019. Register at www.ovc.gov/grants/webinars.html.


FY 2019 Law Enforcement-Based Victim Specialist Program (PDF 388 kb)
Deadline: 07/25/2019
This program will develop or enhance crime victim specialist programs within law enforcement agencies to better support victims through the criminal justice process including by connecting them with community-based direct victim services programs to more quickly and more effectively serve them. Funding under this program will support an estimated 80 victim specialist grants to state, tribal, and/or local law enforcement agencies to hire victim services staff to develop new programs or enhance existing law enforcement-based victim specialist programs. OVC conducted a pre-application webinar on June 6, 2019, and a recording and transcript of this webinar are available at www.ovc.gov/grants/webinars.html. Apply by July 25, 2019.


FY 2019 Field-Generated Solutions for Tribal & Non-Tribal Communities to Improve Services for Victims of Crime (PDF 420 kb)
Deadline: 07/24/2019
The overarching goal of this program is to support victims of crime and to bridge gaps in services to victims. Applicants may apply for one or more of the following purpose areas (PAs): PA 1: Innovative Programs to Fill Gaps in Tribal Crime Victim Services, PA 2: Innovations in Telehealth, PA 3: Improving Responses to Victims of Burglary, PA 4: Improving the Ordering & Collecting of Restitution for Victims, and PA 5: Other Innovative Programs to Fill Gaps in Crime Victim Services. OVC will conduct a pre-application webinar on June 25, at 1:00 p.m. e.t. Register at www.ovc.gov/grants/webinars.html. Apply by July 24, 2019.


FY 2019 Direct Services to Support Victims of Human Trafficking (PDF 572 kb)
Deadline: 07/19/2019
This solicitation will provide funding for direct services to victims of sex trafficking and labor trafficking, as well as for efforts to increase the capacity of communities to respond to human trafficking through the development of interagency partnerships, professional training, and public awareness activities. Applicants may apply for one or more of the following purpose areas (PAs) and focus areas (FAs): PA 1: Comprehensive Services for Victims of All Forms of Human Trafficking which has 3 FAs (FA 1. Building Capacity to Provide Comprehensive Services, FA 2. Sustaining Capacity to Provide Comprehensive Services to Victims of All Forms of Human Trafficking, and FA 3. Comprehensive Services and Partnership With Enhanced Collaborative Model Human Trafficking Task Forces), and Purpose Area 2: Specialized Services. OVC conducted a pre-application webinar on June 14, 2019, and a recording and transcript of this webinar are available at www.ovc.gov/grants/webinars.html.


FY 2019 Discretionary Training and Technical Assistance Program for VOCA Victim Assistance Grantees (PDF 390 kb)
Deadline: 07/18/2019
The purpose of this solicitation is to provide training and technical assistance to VOCA Victim Assistance service providers and others who work with victims of crime. Activities funded through this program may include, but are not limited to: the establishment or enhancement of state victim assistance academies, statewide training initiatives, crime victim-related conferences, basic training for new programs, or scholarships to attend conferences and/or training. Eligible applicants are limited to state administering agencies for the Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) Victim Assistance Program Formula Grants. OVC conducted a pre-application webinar on June 17, 2019, and a recording and transcript of this webinar are available at www.ovc.gov/grants/webinars.html. Apply by July 18, 2019.


FY 2019 Using Telehealth to Improve Care, Access and Quality of Sexual Assault Forensic Exams (PDF 831 kb)
Deadline: 07/17/2019
OVC is seeking applications for funding to enhance the care for sexual assault victims, improve access and quality of forensic examinations, and expand access to the expertise of Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners (SANEs) through telehealth technology for communities with limited access to trained SANEs. Apply under one of the following two purpose areas. Purpose Area 1: State/Tribal/Regional Demonstration Sites - the primary goal of this program is to increase the number of highly trained, experienced SANEs and other medical forensic examiners and provide high-quality care for victims of sexual assault. Purpose Area 2: Technical Assistance Provider - the successful applicant under this program will provide technical assistance to the Purpose Area 1 sites during the planning and implementation of a telehealth program. Apply by July 17, 2019.


FY 2019 Transforming America’s Response to Elder Abuse: Mobilizing Attorneys for Older Victims of Abuse & Financial Exploitation (PDF 480 kb)
Deadline: 07/15/2019
This program will provide increased legal services for older victims of crime (particularly in rural areas), educate attorneys and allied professionals about the needs of older victims, and increase coordinated multidisciplinary responses in supporting older victims of crime. OVC will conduct a pre-application webinar on June 24, 2019, at 1:00 p.m. e.t. Register at www.ovc.gov/grants/webinars.html. Apply by July 15, 2019.


FY 2019 Project Beacon: Increasing Services for Urban American Indian and Alaska Native Victims of Sex Trafficking (PDF 229 kb)
Deadline: 07/15/2019
OVC will make awards to increase the quantity and quality of services currently available to American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) victims of sex trafficking who reside in urban areas. Apply under one of the following purpose areas (PAs). PA 1: Direct Services: Applicants may request funding to: develop or enhance their organizational capacity to provide services to urban AI/AN victims of sex trafficking; develop and sustain collaborative partnerships; conduct community outreach and awareness activities; and provide training to other stakeholders on how to meet the needs of urban AI/AN victims of sex trafficking. PA 2: Training and Technical Assistance (TTA): Applicants may request funding to provide capacity-building TTA to successful grantees under Purpose Area 1. OVC conducted a pre-application webinar on June 19, 2019, and a recording and transcript of this webinar are available at www.ovc.gov/grants/webinars.html. Apply by July 15, 2019.


FY 2019 Specialized Human Trafficking Training and Technical Assistance and Resource Development (PDF 888 kb)
Deadline: 07/10/2019
This program seeks to: (1) enhance the quality of services available to assist victims of human trafficking by providing specialized training and technical assistance (TTA) to stakeholders; (2) develop resources that commemorate the 20th anniversary of the passage of the Trafficking Victim Protection Act to raise public awareness, promote community outreach, and create educational activities to address human trafficking; and (3) develop a resource to improve the response to victims of human trafficking. Applicants may apply for one or more of the following purpose areas (PAs). PA 1: TTA on Crime Victim Compensation for Victims of Human Trafficking, PA 2: TTA on Labor Trafficking, PA 3: TTA on State-Level Financial Remedies for Human Trafficking Victims, PA 4: Resource Development on Public Awareness for the 20th Anniversary of the Trafficking Victim Protection Act, and PA 5: Resource Development on Standards of Care for Human Trafficking Victims. Apply by July 10, 2019.


FY 2019 Transforming Family Justice Center Services: Creating New Pathways of Hope and Healing for Polyvictims (PDF 502 kb)
Deadline: 07/08/2019
OVC seeks to expand the work and lessons learned from OVC's FY 2016 demonstration initiative, "A Pathway to Justice, Healing, and Hope: Addressing Polyvictimization in a Family Justice Center." Purpose Area 1: OVC expects to fund up to six FJCs or similar co-located service model agencies to: implement the validated assessment tool (see Appendix A); increase partnerships with traditional and non-traditional FJC services to serve identified polyvictims more holistically; expand case management services to include a thorough understanding of the specific needs of the survivors; and build capacity within their communities to leverage existing and new resources for crime victims. Purpose Area 2: OVC anticipates funding one organization to provide comprehensive technical assistance to the Purpose Area 1 sites selected under this program. OVC conducted a pre-application webinar on May 20, 2019, and a recording and transcript of this webinar are available at www.ovc.gov/grants/webinars.html.


FY 2019 VOCA Victim Assistance (PDF 452 kb)
Deadline: 07/08/2019
Under this formula grant program, OVC will award each eligible state victim assistance program an annual grant to support eligible crime victim assistance programs in that state or territory. Funds under this program shall be used by states and territories to support eligible crime victim assistance programs that provide direct services to crime victims with the following exception: states and territories may retain up to 5 percent of their total grant for administrative and training purposes. Apply by 5:00 p.m. e.t. on July 8, 2019.


FY 2019 Building State Technology Capacity and Elder Abuse Hotlines (PDF 421 kb)
Deadline: 07/08/2019
This program seeks ambitious yet viable proposals from Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) Formula State Administrating Agencies. Successful applicants will implement visionary statewide technology programs to enhance victims’ access to services, foster innovation and efficiency in the provision of services, improve the quality of services, and improve the accessibility and responsiveness of victim service organizations. OVC conducted a pre-application webinar on June 11, 2019, and a recording and transcript of this webinar are available at www.ovc.gov/grants/webinars.html. Apply by July 8, 2019.


FY 2019 Improving Outcomes for Child and Youth Victims of Human Trafficking (PDF 518 kb)
Deadline: 07/01/2019
The purpose of this program is to improve outcomes for children and youth who are victims of labor and sex trafficking by integrating human trafficking policy and programming at the state or tribal jurisdiction level and enhancing coordinated, multidisciplinary, and statewide approaches to serving trafficked youth. Applicants should identify the state or tribe’s greatest barriers to identifying and assisting child and youth victims of sex and labor trafficking and/or to investigating and prosecuting these trafficking cases, and propose a program to systematically address those barriers. OVC is particularly interested in applications from states with a high geographic need for this program. OVC conducted a pre-application webinar on June 13, 2019, and a recording and transcript of this webinar are available at www.ovc.gov/grants/webinars.html. Apply by July 1, 2019.


FY 2019 Field-Generated Innovations in Assistance to Victims of Human Trafficking (PDF 428 kb)
Deadline: 06/27/2019
To meet the needs of a rapidly evolving anti-trafficking field, and to best serve victims of human trafficking, OVC is seeking innovative ideas to enhance identification of and services for victims. Proposed projects should develop or enhance promising practices, models, and victim-centered programs, or apply them in innovative ways, to build the capacity of victim service providers to close gaps in assisting all victims of sex and labor trafficking in the United States. OVC conducted a pre-application webinar on May 9, 2019, and a recording and transcript of this webinar are available at www.ovc.gov/grants/webinars.html. Apply by June 27, 2019.


FY 2019 Enhancing Language and Other Access to Services Program (PDF 457 kb)
Deadline: 06/26/2019
This program seeks to enhance language access services for crime victims to break down barriers that prevent many individuals from reporting crimes and accessing the services they need after crime victimization. Funding will support the provision of direct services, the development of language access plans, and will expand the capacity of community-based organizations within linguistically specific communities to address the needs of victims of all types of crime. View a change to page 6 at www.ovc.gov/grants/pdftxt/FY19-EASP-Solicitation-Updates-508.pdf. OVC conducted a pre-application webinar on May 14, 2019, and a recording and transcript of this webinar are available at www.ovc.gov/grants/webinars.html. Apply by June 26, 2019.


FY 2019 Advancing the Use of Technology to Assist Victims of Crime (PDF 395 kb)
Deadline: 06/25/2019
Through this program, OVC will support national-scope initiatives and regional initiatives (that can be replicated nationally) to maximize the use of technology to improve and increase access to crime victim services. Projects could include, but are not limited to: (1) Development of new national app(s) or creation of another technology platform designed to serve victims of crime. (2) Development of regionally focused app(s) or creation of another technology platform designed to serve victims of crime. (3) Expansion or enhancement of existing services and/or hotlines on digital, online, or text platforms or an app that uses technology to provide services, referrals, tools, and information to victims of crime. Apply by June 25, 2019.


FY 2019 Guidance for Invited Applications for Antiterrorism and Emergency Assistance Program for Crime Victim Compensation and/or Assistance (PDF 473 kb)
Deadline: Open
The Antiterrorism and Emergency Assistance Program (AEAP) is a mechanism by which the Director of OVC may award supplemental crime victim compensation and assistance to respond to an act of domestic terrorism or mass criminal violence. The criminal act has to be of sufficient magnitude that the jurisdiction cannot provide needed services to victims of the incident with existing resources and it places an undue financial hardship on the jurisdiction’s ability to respond to victims of other crimes in a timely and comprehensive manner. This is not a competitive solicitation. Only after OVC has consulted with an eligible organization can an application be submitted.

Back to Top


EventsDirectoryE-Mail Updates
Facebook     Twitter     You TubeEventsDirectoryE-Mail Updates
 
National Calendar of Crime Victim Assistance-Related Events
Upcoming Event(s)
National Organization for Victim Assistance (NOVA) 45th Annual Training Event
Phoenix, AZ
07/22/2019-07/25/2019

Online Directory of Crime Victims Services.