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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 89780 Find in a Library
Title: Support for Victims of Crime - A Survey of the Problems Particularly Emotional - Encountered by Crime Victims and the Schemes Available To Help Them
Author(s): D A Baker
Corporate Author: Bramshill Police College
United Kingdom
Date Published: 1982
Page Count: 47
Sponsoring Agency: Bramshill Police College
Hampshire, England
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: United Kingdom
Annotation: A victim services program instituted by the police and a local volunteer organization in Dorset, England in 1978 has helped elderly residents living alone cope with victimization by offering practical help and referrals to other social service agencies.
Abstract: Because of urbanization and greater population mobility, some victims of crime find themselves alone and unable to cope with a crisis. Moreover, police officers seldom have sufficient time to listen sympathetically to a victim. The National Association of Victim Support Schemes (NAVSS) has addressed this problem by launching local programs, and some jurisdictions have initiated their own projects using NAVSS guidelines. Data on Dorset's independent program were collected from reports and interviews with the victim service organizer, police, and victims of crime whom volunteers had helped. Police provide referrals to the victim support program and the trained volunteers assist with simple chores the police cannot undertake, such as cleaning a ransacked house, advising on insurance, alerting relatives, and referring the victim to needed social services. Common problems encountered by victim support schemes include delays in referral, lack of police cooperation, and inadequate publicity. All persons interviewed in the Dorset evaluation were between 59 and 89 years old and had few or no contacts with neighbors or relatives. All described serious degrees of stress and emotional and financial problems resulting from the crime, usually burglary. All were pleased to see the victim support volunteer, but had been unaware of the service. The overwhelming majority were satisfied with the help they received. Suggestions to improve the program include rural outreach efforts, better recordkeeping and monitoring of individual cases, better volunteer screening, and more publicity. The appendixes contain a list of nonvoluntary community resources, the NAVSS guidelines, the interview questionnaire, a victim compensation scheme, and 15 references.
Index Term(s): Elderly victim services; Police services for victims; United Kingdom (UK); Victim reactions to crime; Volunteer programs
Note: Junior Command Course, 5th, 1982
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