FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 04, 2011


April 14 ceremony at Capitol highlights Missouri's observation of National Crime Victims' Rights Week

Week recognizes hard-earned advances in rights of crime victims and continuing efforts to ensure victims' rights are recognized in the criminal justice system

April 10-16 is National Crime Victims' Rights Week in Missouri, a time to remember the rights and protections guaranteed to crime victims in Missouri and across the U.S. because of the more than 30 years of effort by survivors and victims' advocates. This year's theme— Reshaping the Future and Honoring the Past— encourages those involved in the criminal justice system to continue exploring ways to advance the rights and resources available to crime victims. 
A ceremony in honor of National Crime Victims' Rights Week will be held at noon on April 14 on the south steps of the Missouri Capitol. Victims will be represented by guest speaker Carol Cromer, who will share her personal story.
"I am proud to have worked for more than two decades with crime victims, victims' advocates and others throughout Missouri to ensure that victims always have a voice in the criminal justice system, and to make sure we continue to advance victims' rights in Missouri," said Gov. Jay Nixon. "In Missouri, we recognize crime's impact on victims, their families and our communities, and we will never stop working to improve the services and resources available to victims.”
Victims' programs in Missouri include the Crime Victims Fund, which reimburses the many out-of pocket expenses that victims and their families face in the aftermath of a crime. It also helps fund assistance programs that support victims by providing physical and emotional care and guidance in navigating the criminal justice system. Additionally, since 1993 Missouri has received more than $100 million from the federal Crime Victims Fund and has helped provide services to almost 1million Missouri victims of crime.
The Missouri Victim Automated Notification System (MoVANS) allows all Missouri crime victims to get automatic e-mails or phone calls any time an offender is scheduled to be released from prison or jail, or have a parole or court hearing. It also allows anyone to receive an automatic notification any time an order of protection has been served in their case.  To learn more about MoVANS, including its other features, and to register for the service, go to: http://www.dps.mo.gov/dir/programs/cvsu/movans.asp.   The following agencies donated their time and effort to make this year's Crime Victims' Rights Week ceremony and awareness events successes: Missouri Attorney General's Office, Missouri Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence, Missouri Department of Corrections, Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services, Missouri Department of Public Safety—Crime Victims' Compensation Program, Missouri Department of Public Safety—Crime Victim Services Unit, Missouri Department of Social Services—Youth Services Division, Missouri Office of Prosecution Services, Missouri Secretary of State's Office—Safe at Home, and Mothers Against Drunk Driving.

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For more information, call 573-751-5432 or e-mail mike.o'connell@dps.mo.gov