08. Victim Outreach

Many resources are available to victims in Georgia.  Primarily, these victims services are offered through state agencies and provide victims with opportunities such as the ability to submit victim impact statements and to receive notices regarding parole decisions.

Often, victims who have received help through these governmental resources are left desiring additional information, particularly as the years progress following their victimization.  A victim may want answers from an offender as to why the crime was committed, why the offender did not reach out to the victim following the offense to express remorse, or to learn the location of stolen or lost personal property which held significant sentimental value to the victim.  A victim may want to tell the person how the crime changed the trajectory of the victim’s life, to offer forgiveness to the offender, or to learn whether the offender has seized the opportunities in prison for rehabilitation.

Similarly, people convicted of crimes often want to reach out to the victims in their cases but are uncertain of the best way to do so.  Many times, they are hesitant to attempt contact with victims based upon advice from their attorneys at the pretrial stage to have no contact with the victims and based upon a concern that they may be in violation of their sentences if contact is made with the victims now.  Another fear is that communicating with the victims to express remorse may not be well received, resulting in the unintended and counterproductive effect of retraumatization of the victims.

A structured, guided dialogue between victims and offenders can bring much needed closure to both parties.  We have the experience and compassion to work with victims, providing them with the information they need in order for them to be positioned for moving forward on a more positive path. CONTACT US to discuss the particular victim outreach issues in your case.