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Establishing or Enhancing Law Enforcement-Based Victim Services – Advocacy Parameters & Documentation

NCJ Number
Date Published
October 2020
42 pages

This publication, which was produced by the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) and funded by the U.S. Justice Department’s Office for Victims of Crime (OVC) instructs law enforcement leaders in the role of law enforcement agencies in a community-based approach to serving the needs of crime victims, as well as how a law enforcement agency should organize and function in fulfilling its community role in serving crime victims.


A communitywide system for serving crime victims involves 1) law enforcement-based victims services, in which victim-services personnel are employed by or contracted to serve a law enforcement agency; 2) hybrid community-based victim services, whose personnel are employed by a community-based agency that has a formal agreement with a law enforcement agency to jointly dictate the role of victim services personnel; and 3) community-based victim services, in  which victim advocates are employed by a community-based agency that may or may not have an agreement with a law enforcement agency for cooperative victim services. The IACP training publication series aims to improve law enforcement-based victim services as a community component of victim advocacy. An introductory section of this report outlines the content of prior IACP publications and accompanying webinars that provide training in law enforcement victim services. This is followed by a section on law enforcement victim advocacy parameters. This section addresses the selection and hiring of victim services personnel, reporting structure and supervision practices related to victim services, the span of victim services responsibility, and ethical victim service practices. The concluding section of the training material addresses victim service documentation practices (location, content, and access).