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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 114800 Find in a Library
Title: Aftermath of Crime: A Mental Health Crisis
Project Director: A W Burgess; R F Rich
Date Published: 1985
Page Count: 17
Type: Issue Overview
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This document examines the emotional and psychological effects of victimization, factors influencing these effects, optimal treatment and service delivery methods and systems, and research needs.
Abstract: Short-term effects of victimization may include shock, denial, temporary paralysis, withdrawal, helplessness and despair, anger, confusion, and anxiety. Post-acute symptoms may include agitation, insomnia, loss of identity and self-respect, and erosion of trust and autonomy. Long-term reactions include chronic stress, self-blame, depression, alienation, and sense of loss. Co-victims, such as family members, may experience similar symptoms. Each stage of reaction may require separate assessment and treatment. Treatments may include crisis intervention, and interventions reflecting specific peer identification (i.e., age, gender, and offense specificity). Victim services are needed at eight states of victim need: emergency response, victim stabilization, resource mobilization, post-arrest, precourt and court appearances, and pre- and post-sentencing. Response to victimization requires a comprehensive, multidimensional approach that emphasizes coordination of all aspects of the community victim-service network. Services also should be cognizant of factors that facilitate effective coping with victimization, including early denial, information seeking, role rehearsal, anticipating and devaluating failure, and combining optimism and realism. Programs also need to consider the role of substance abuse as a victimization risk factor and a factor in the development of post-traumatic stress disorder. In addition, research is needed in such areas as victim help-seeking, treatment effectiveness, needs of minority and at-risk populations, substance abuse, and mental health services. Recommendations for service delivery, professional standards and training, financial support, and research are included.
Main Term(s): Victim services
Index Term(s): Needs assessment; Psychological victimization effects; Victim counseling; Victim reactions to crime; Victim services training
Note: Final statement of the Assessment Panel From A Services Research and Evaluation Colloquium, February 28 - March 3, 1985, Washington Marriott Hotel, Washington, DC.
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=114800

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