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NCJ Number: NCJ 226501     Find in a Library
Title: Strengthening Sexual Assault Victim's Right to Privacy
  Document URL: HTML PDF 
Author(s): Joanne Zannoni M.S.W., LICSW
Corporate Author: Connecticut Sexual Assault Crisis Services, Inc.
United States of America
Date Published: 2009
Page Count: 13
  Annotation: In focusing on sexual assault victims’ right to privacy, this guide reinforces the importance of keeping information confidential and offers recommendations, addresses common challenges, explains core concepts, and offers practical guidance that assists victim advocates in maintaining victim confidentiality.
Abstract: In 2002, the Connecticut Sexual Assault Crisis Services, Inc., which produced this guide, surveyed sexual assault victims living in Connecticut. All of the victims surveyed indicated that it was “important” or “very important” that their conversations with a sexual assault crisis advocate be kept confidential. The victims did not want the details of their assaults, their feelings, or their situations shared with any other persons or agency. Confidentiality plays a vital role in the recovery process because it helps establish an environment in which victims feel comfortable and trusting in seeking assistance, making connections with advocates, and retaining the power to choose what information can be shared, with whom, when, and how. Key confidentiality principles are outlined in this guide. One of these principles is that the victim service center’s policies and practices are the fundamental support for maintaining victims’ privacy. One recommendation for center policies is that a victim’s decision to disclose information be voluntary and free from pressure. The challenges to confidentiality identified and discussed are confidentiality breaches, pressures to violate confidentiality, mandated services, advocates as interpreters, risk management issues, and crimes against advocates and centers. A section on protections for victims’ right to privacy provides guidance on policies and procedures for confidentiality in sexual assault crisis and victim services centers; consistent advocacy practices; and laws, statutes, and regulations. The guide concludes with practical tips on ensuring victim confidentiality by decreasing the spread of information, creating less information, knowing what information is kept and used, and informing victims of court protections.
Main Term(s): Sexual assault victims
Index Term(s): Right of privacy ; Victim services ; Confidential records access ; Victims rights ; Victim attitudes
Sponsoring Agency: Office for Victims of Crime
US Dept of Justice
Office of Justice Programs
United States of America
Grant Number: 2005-VF-GX-K027
Sale Source: Connecticut Sexual Assault Crisis Services, Inc.
96 Pitkin Street
East Hartford, CT 06108
United States of America
Type: Policy/Procedure Handbook/Manual
Country: United States of America
Language: English
Note: Downloaded May 5, 2009
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