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Task force, OUS team to promote awareness


In recognition of National Crime Victims’ Rights Week (April 21-27), at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, April 23, 2013 Ohio University Southern and the Lawrence County Domestic Violence Task Force, Inc. will present Taking Control After Crime, a discussion of victim rights by a panel comprised of representatives from various agencies responsible for assisting survivors of crime.

The program will be in OUS’s Bowman Auditorium and scheduled participants include Lawrence County Municipal Judge Donald R. Capper, Lawrence County Prosecuting Attorney Brigham Anderson, Lawrence County Sheriff Jeff Lawless, Mark Carducci of Southeastern Ohio Legal Services, Lawrence County Domestic Violence Task Force’s Court Advocate Kevin Samples, and a crime survivor.

After each panel member has discussed his or her role in assisting crime victims, the floor will be opened for questions from the audience.

According to last year’s National Crime Victimization Survey, more than 50 percent of violent crimes were not reported to police in 2006-2010. In addition, a 2011 report called the Use of Victim Services Agencies by Victims of Serious Violent Crime showed that only 9 percent of violent crime victims received needed services in the 1993 to 2009 timeframe.

Advocates also face a host of new challenges as they strive to provide culturally competent services for increasingly diverse populations (e.g., seniors, teens, immigrant populations) and victims of newly prevalent crimes (e.g., trafficking and technology-related stalking and identity theft). As funding sources decrease, providers must target their services even more strategically in order to do more with less.

In addition co-sponsoring the panel discussion, the Lawrence County Domestic Violence Task Force will also observe National Crime Victims’ Rights Week with a free self-defense class presented by Wilds Martial Arts of Ironton, Ohio on Thursday, April 25 at 6 p.m. at the Christ Episcopal Church, 501 Park Ave., Ironton. OVC encourages widespread participation in the week’s events and in other victim-related observances throughout the year.

For additional information about 2013 National Crime Victims’ Rights Week and how to help victims in your community, please contact the Lawrence County Domestic Violence Task Force at (740) 532-7111.

For more ideas on how to volunteer to help crime victims, visit the Office for Victims of Crime website, www.ovc.gov.