Topics At A Glance
- Increased Victims Issues Training
- Utilizing Technology/Better Communication
- More Effective Victims Outreach and Services
Increased Victims Issues Training
- Whether a direct victim of someone we are supervising, a family member of a victim or a member of the public impacted by the financial and social ramifications of criminal acts, every victim has a right to respect, compassion and access to the criminal justice system.
- As offenders pass through our correctional facilities and parole/probation supervision, victim services units are there to help crime victims navigate the process as well as keep them informed of offender whereabouts and any changes in supervision status.
- In 2010 the Division of Parole and Probation, along with DPSCS’ professional development unit, created an intensive curriculum for supervisors and agents on domestic violence and victims’ rights issues, and DPP routinely processes domestic violence risk assessments and supervision checklists.
- Also this year, new training requirements were implemented for the Maryland Police and Correctional Training Commissions (PCTC), which will now incorporate routine education for law enforcement personnel regarding laws of notice, service, support and rights available to victims and their representatives.
- PCTC has also been involved in creating a uniform reporting form for law enforcement to use when someone is a victim of identify fraud, making it easier to transmit electronically to federal authorities who process these types of cases.
- Working with the Governor’s office of Crime, Control and Prevention’s (GOCCP) Family Violence Council, our Information, Technology and Communications Division (ITCD) added a domestic violence flag to RAP sheets for offenders who crimes are domestic related.
- While there is no specific crime in Maryland of domestic assault, law enforcement will now be able to see if an individual has a history of domestic issues in an effort to better protect potential victims.
- Having the ability to categorize crimes as domestic violence related will also allow Maryland to quantify the number of domestic violence crimes committed, identify trends associated with domestic violence and will give the State the ability to assess the extent of domestic violence to further prevention efforts.
- Also working with GOCCP, ITCD was the main conduit to implementing a protective order regulation that improves the notification process to petitioners/victims. DPSCS established a connection between the system where these orders will be entered by courts and police and a system where petitioners will register for notifications.
- Now when local law enforcement serves a protective order the victim/petitioner has the ability to be electronically notified.
- DPSCS’ Criminal Injuries Compensation Board (CICB) uses offender court fees, restitution, and state and federal funds to compensate victims of crime for the physical and psychological losses associated with crime.
- Recent reform to the criminal injuries compensation process has already yielded positive results for victims. Our claims proficiency has improved with a decrease in claims denials as well as reducing the number of days it takes to process a claim from by 15% during FY10. Return of claims for misinformation has virtually been eliminated. The staff has also tripled revenue recovery efforts to increase the flow of funds that can be distributed back to crime victims.
- During FY10, CICB awarded $7.3 million in compensation, providing 1000 of Maryland’s crime victims with financial restoration.
- CICB also added direct victim service staff and revamped the lobby of their office to create a welcoming first impression for victims who come to file a claim.
- In October of 2010 the Maryland Crime Victims’ Resource Center recognized DPSCS and Secretary Gary D. Maynard for both the Department’s enhancements to CICB as well as involvement in changes made during the legislative session.
- Intensive victim services curriculum developed for Parole & Probation staff
- Police & Correctional Training Commissions incorporated routine education for law enforcement personnel on victim issues
- DPSCS IT developed domestic violence flag for offender RAP sheets
- Implemented connection between systems that record protective orders and send notifications of service to petitioners
Improved Outreach and Services
Criminal Injuries Compensation Board FY10
- 15% reduction in number of days to process claim
- Return of claims for misinformation virtually eliminated
- $7.3 million dispersed in compensation
- Served 1000 victims with financial restoration