The Victim's Rights Movement began in the early 1980s and aimed at seeking to understand the criminal-victim relationship. In 1980, NOVA merged the victim's growing demand to have appropriate access to the justice organization into a new plan stand on victims' rights. The commencement of a National Campaign for Victim Rights which is 'the victims' rights week, was recognized and executed in 1981 by the president of the time, President Ronald W. Reagan The interest in the movement connected with increasing alarm on crime in America. Crime victims and survivors gave the victims' movement much energy. The victims' movement raised the abandoned problem of criminal vehemence against different crime victims ("Oral History of the Crime Victim Assistance Field," 2018). The movements founded programs to help fight victimization and provide shelter for the victims. One of the Activists is Aileen Adams.
Aileen Adams became the director of Office of Victims of Crime in 1994 where she was aiming at integrating the voices of victims of crime into the Federal criminal justice system. She began her involvement with the crime victims 'movement as a consumer advocate. She was a prosecutor in Los Angeles, and her first cases were criminal prosecutions against nursing homes. The prosecutions enabled her to talk to hundreds and hundreds of victims of abuse in nursing homes which pushed her to draft the first Nursing Home Patients' Bill of rights ("Oral History of the Crime Victim Assistance Field," 2018). She later joined the Rape Treatment Centre, which was founded by Gail Abarbanel, where she acted as a volunteer. The Centre was opened in the mid-1970s and being among the first victim service programs; they provided services to sexually assaulted victims.
Adams met her first violent crime victim at the Rape Treatment Centre, who had been sexually assaulted by a bus driver. Her case was not solved because the District Attorney said she did not resist the crime. She, therefore, became her advocate. They worked on removing the victim resistance provision from California Rape Law. Adams and the whole Rape Treatment Center initiated a Children's Advocacy Center in Santa Monica, which was environmental friendly for the children. When she became the director of OVC, she found it as an opportunity to open the doors of Justice Departments for the crime victims. She needed to push for The Victims' Right Amendment, which posed a huge battle with the Justice Department. In reference to an article by The University of Akron, Adams alters the words of the Attorney General, "I want to listen to all my top advisers give their view on a Constitutional Amendment on victims' rights, adding in the constitution, the right for the victims to be informed, present and listened to" ("Oral History of the Crime Victim Assistance Field", 2018). Decades ago, rape cases were solved only if the victim tried to resist, failure to which their cases were not attended to. Also, there were no victim services visible ("Oral History of the Crime Victim Assistance Field," 2018). Victim rights laws did not exist. The victims were thus not helped out, and they would bury themselves in grief.
Today, the voices of crime victims have been brought into the training of service providers. These victims can now get justice. Also, the Crime Victims' Fund (CVF) which Adams says "made it possible through the decades that have passed, to give funds to victims' rights and services all over the nation. The CVF helped to finance the OVC when Adams was the director, and she states that, "And that enabled us to do so much" ("Oral History of the Crime Victim Assistance Field," 2018).
Oral History of the Crime Victim Assistance Field. (2018). Retrieved from http://vroh.uakron.edu/transcripts/Adams.php?title=Aileen%20Adams%20Interview&action=view&sf=72013&off=22108&id=00:40:02:25#00:40:02:25
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