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Supporting Rural, Remote, and Underserved Survivors: The Need for Mobile Victim Advocacy Units

NCJ Number
Date Published
August 2019
15 pages

This report describes how the partnership of Northern Arizona University and the Victim Witness Services of Coconino County, Arizona (NAU-VWS) developed and implemented a needs assessment in the remote locations of Grand Canyon and Page that determined the scope of victimization issues, populations needing victim services, and the victim services needed.


For this project, researchers worked with the advocates who serve these remote areas to develop a culturally appropriate and relevant survey of questions on victim service needs in those communities, which contain under-served rural and Native-American populations. The results of this project and dissemination of its findings will strengthen the literature on access to victim services, as well as gain insights into ways that research can inform practice in bridging the gap between victim research and victim services. The NAU research team interviewed the victim advocates in the target areas about the populations they serve, available services in the areas, their daily work activities, and where improvements in their work are needed. Data were also obtained from the needs assessment, which used a variety of question formats, some that focused on issues particular to Native-American victim service needs. The research team used a variety of platforms to implement the needs assessment survey. Since the research used a convenience sampling method, this report advises that the generalization of results should not be overstated. Overall, the needs assessment found respondents want more Native -American instruction by Native practitioners who speak the native language when describing or delivering victim services, with attention to experienced features of the Native-American way of life. Both locations identified a lack of resources or lack of knowledge of resources as primary reasons for not seeking victim services. 3 tables