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Introduction to Victimology
You graduated from the Criminal Justice Bachelor Program only 1 year ago, and you are now the victim rights advocate for your county prosecutor’s office. When you entered the criminal justice program, you never dreamed that you would have a career helping victims of crimes to navigate the criminal justice system. Your duties include everything from comforting a victim of a sexual assault to helping the families of murder victims. Already, you have had opportunities to help so many people, and this type of work makes you feel proud of what you do. You are so proud, that it is all you speak about to your families and friends. So when Grace, the chief attorney, asks you to do something, you try to do your absolute best. The following assignment is no different.
Grace, the chief attorney (CA), asks you to draft a report that she will use in her presentation to the county commission. Her goal is to keep the victim witness assistant positions that currently exist and increase the number of these positions in the future. She knows that providing victim advocacy is a relatively new concept to the criminal justice system and that the commissioners are not familiar with the concept that the criminal justice system should take a more active role with victims.
Grace needs you to provide information from 8 of the following 12 areas of discussion:
- Give a definition of victimology.
- What is the history of victimology, and how has it developed?
- Explain how it is different from criminology, sociology, or psychology.
- Who established the first safe houses for battered women? Where and when were these safe houses established?
- Who established the first rape crisis centers? Where and when were these centers established?
- How has the Civil Rights movement contributed to antidiscrimination efforts and the establishment of hate crime legislation and policy?
- What role have children’s rights groups played in highlighting the problems that child victims face in the criminal justice system?
- Which organizations might she contact that provide specific advocacy for victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, child abuse, and homicide?
- What services are not provided by government crime compensation programs?
- Explain the need for all states to require mandatory reporting by religious organizations of child abuse by clergy.
- How can the media be used to affect change in states that do not yet require mandatory reporting?
- Research the clergy abuse in a state of your choice, and answer the following:
- If mandatory reporting exists, how long has this been a requirement? What organizations are involved in tracking and helping the victims with this type of abuse?
- If mandatory reporting does not exist, what alternative processes exist for reporting clergy abuse?