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Development of a national study of victim needs and assistance

Author(s)Brickman, Ellen
Title Development of a national study of victim needs and assistance
Source National Institute of Justice, Office of Justice Programs,2002, pp 1-162
Date 2002
Document type Research report
Coverage USA

Summary This report is from a multi-site study in the USA exploring the material and psychological needs of crime victims and where victims go for help, including formal and informal support systems. The needs of victims across different crime types and from different demographic locations are also explored. Victims from six sites, two urban, two suburban and two rural, participated in the study, through telephone interviews and focus groups. It was found that crime victims in general have many of their needs met by informal support networks, with the exception of domestic violence victims, and crime victims' greatest unmet need centred around wanting more information about case status. A significant proportion of crime victims had out of pocket expenses as a result of the crime and it was found that 80% of these victims were not aware of Crime Victims Compensation. Another key finding from the study was that domestic violence victims do not feel safe and are still having negative experiences from the police and in court, despite years of reform. In addition to victims of domestic violence, other groups of crime victims with unmet needs are non-whites and burglary victims.
Keywords Victim needs; service delivery; compensation; help-seeking; youth; rural; domestic violence

Victims needs