“I can’t thank you enough for your support with my no-contact order. I’m so thankful that Our VOICE is helping people in our community through these awful situations of violence. Your kindness and understanding will not be forgotten!”- court advocacy client
Our VOICE provides comprehensive services for survivors of sexual violence and their families.
The Our VOICE Client Services Coordinator and Court Advocate can do the following:
• Connect client with community resources for needs such as housing, transportation, and food
• Accompany and advocate for the client during medical, law enforcement, and legal procedures
• Provide ongoing emotional support
• Provide referrals to legal agencies for representation and legal advice
• Assist client in filing for state funded Victim’s Compensation
• Act as a liaison between client and District Attorney’s Office and law enforcement agencies
Law Enforcement Advocacy
Sexual assault is a crime; however, it is the client’s decision whether or not to file a police report. If a client decides to file a report it will need to be done in the city or county where the assault occurred. Reporting can be done through Our VOICE and we provide you with the option to remain anonymous through a blind report. Our VOICE can also accompany clients to meetings with law enforcement and relay information and case updates from law enforcement to clients.
A Blind Report is an anonymous police report. If someone is interested in filing a blind report, they can give as much or as little information as they feel comfortable. Even if an individual gives all their contact information and the perpetrator’s as well, an investigation will not be opened unless the survivor expresses that interest with the police.
After the blind report form is filled out, Our VOICE faxes it to a confidential fax machine at the appropriate law enforcement agency. The copy is kept confidential and is not part of public record. If the individual desires, they can have a copy of the blind report as well. Law enforcement will never get in touch with the survivor based on information on the blind report form unless the client wishes them to do so. Our VOICE can also act as the intermediary between the police and the client.
Our VOICE can play an important role in helping clients navigate the justice system.
Court Advocacy can include:
• Assisting clients in asserting victim rights
• Providing information about the legal process and court proceedings
• Providing clients a safe space to disclose information
• Giving clients support and encouragement throughout the legal process
• Accompanying clients to court and court-related proceedings
However, Our VOICE cannot:
• Provide legal advice
• Represent clients in legal proceedings
• Make any decision for clients
• Coach clients regarding their testimony
• Negotiate settlements on behalf of clients
Victims Compensation Claim
Victims Compensation serves to reimburse citizens for medical expenses and lost wages as a result of being the victim of a crime committed in North Carolina. While no amount of money can erase the trauma and grief victims suffer, this financial aid can be beneficial to the recovery process.
All Victims Compensation claims must include the signed, notarized application, a copy of the police report, and all itemized bills the client wishes to have covered. There is no guarantee that Victims Compensation will cover these costs, each claim is investigated individually and this process can often take some time. Victims have up to two years from the date of the crime to file for Victims Compensation, however you MUST have filed a police report within 72 hours (3 days) of the crime.