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“Food For Thought” During National Crime Victims’ Rights Week

photo2(April 22, 2013)--- “Food For Thought,” a paper plate-based campaign that gives crime victims a voice, is part of this year’s Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services’ participation in National Crime Victims’ Rights Week. The annual recognition, promoted by the U.S. Justice Department, is held near the end of April to remind everyone to treat victims with dignity and respect throughout the criminal justice process and beyond.

This year, DPSCS Community Supervision offices and correctional facilities statewide are displaying thousands of paper plates emblazoned with messages about the impact of crime. Some were done by victims themselves. Others were colored or written by school children; one Baltimore-area school contributed more than 500 plates.

Each year, DPSCS actively participates in this week of remembrance. This year, the Victim Services Unit of DPSCS is hosting a prison tour for victims and those who work with victims. It’s Thursday, April 25 at Jessup Correctional Institution. Some victims - and many advocates and criminal justice professionals who work with victims - sincerely appreciate the opportunity to see the inner workings of a major State prison.

In addition, some DPSCS facilities will host special victim speakers. Notably, Maryland Correctional Institution-Hagerstown’s Lifer’s Group has an entire week’s worth of activities, including a visit from Peggy Bradnick, whose kidnapping by a deranged former inmate in the 1960s was an international news story.

Maryland Correctional Training Center in Hagerstown will have inmate artwork on display that will be donated to a victim services agency to help raise money.