Section 1: Victim Media Advocacy
Crime Victims and Public Awareness
Impact on Your Organization
Educating the Media
Impact of Coverage Can Affect Victims
Types of News Stories
Major Concerns of Coverage
Impact On Victims of Specific Crimes
Cultural Competency
Victim Privacy v. Media
The Role of Victim Service Providers
Victim Referrals to the Media
Tips for Crime Victims and Survivors

Link to A Guide for Journalists Who Report on Crime and Crime Victims
Link to Crime Victim Outreach Tip Sheets

Victim Media Advocacy:
How to Facilitate Sensitive and Respectful Treatment of Crime Victims

Major Concerns of Coverage

a. Privacy
b. The Stigma of Victimization
c. Confidentiality
d. Language and Content
e. Inappropriate Timing
f. Aggressive or Intrusive Reporting
g. Ignoring Victim Wishes
h. Explicit Visuals
i. Inaccurate Reporting

Major Concerns of Coverage

Decades of reporting on crime and victimization have identified key concerns that crime victims often have about how the process affects them. Victimization often places victims on what has been described as “an emotional roller coaster” or “an ocean of emotions.”  The fluctuating nature of one’s response to trauma results in good days and bad days. It can be helpful and validating at one moment for a victim to speak to the media, and emotionally devastating and distressing shortly thereafter.

Crime victims’ concerns about news media coverage offer a great starting point for mutual education and ongoing discussions among victim service providers, allied justice professionals, and the news media. When reporters are aware of these concerns, it can begin a productive dialogue in which journalists can also raise their own issues and concerns. Victim service providers can clearly state victims’ key concerns in their ongoing interactions with journalists. The goal for all parties is to promote sensitive news media coverage of crime and victimization.

The following concerns can be augmented and further articulated by the specific experiences of crime victims/survivors and victim service providers within a community:

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