​Mobilizing victim services: the role of reporting to the police

Author(s) Zaykowski, Heather
Title Mobilizing victim services: the role of reporting to the police
Source Journal of Traumatic Stress; June 2014; Vol. 27; Issue 3; p 365-369
Date 2014
Document type Journal article
CoverageUSA
Summary In this article the author explores the help seeking behaviour of victims of crime and in particular how the role of reporting to police affects help seeking. Research has shown that victim assistance agencies have grown since the 1970s but very few victims of violent crime seek help from victims services. Data for the study was obtained from the National Crime Victimization Survey 2008-2011, and the final sample consisted of 4,746 cases but only 7.8% of these victims sought services. In addition to the dependent variable of victims seeking help, independent measures such as demographics, incident features and problems experienced by the victim were included in the data analysis. The study showed that victim services were more likely to be utilised when the incident had been reported to the police, the victim was female and the incident was intimate or family violence. The researcher recommends additional research to understand police discretion in connecting victims to services and reasons why victims may choose to not take up services.
Keywords Victim services; police; victimization survey; help-seeking
Topic Service delivery