Pub. date: 2002 | Online Pub. Date: September 15, 2007 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412950664 | Print ISBN: 9780761922582 | Online ISBN: 9781412950664| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Robert C. Davis & Delmira Gonzalez
Victim advocates work to help victims assert their rights and further their interests in the criminal justice system, social services, and society. Advocacy can be defined at the individual level, where dedicated individuals assist victims with problems stemming from crime and their involvement with the criminal justice system. Advocacy can also be defined at the collective level, where organizers aid victims by pressing for positive change in statutes and government programs. Advocates work with victims of violence from the time a crime occurs through the prosecution and sentencing of the perpetrator. The role of an advocate is to help victims cope with the physical, psychological, and emotional trauma that may arise in the wake of criminal victimization, and to help them negotiate with police, prosecutors, judges, and other criminal justice officials. The work of some advocates begins at the scene of the crime, where they may be summoned by the ...