Climate of criticism of large amounts of CVC funds dormant in the account
2001: State Bar of Texas Board of Directors endorsed working with the Office of the Attorney General (OAG) to secure an appropriation of the CVC funds during the 77th session
77th Texas Legislature directed the Office of the Attorney General, in partnership with the Supreme Court of Texas, to create the Crime Victims Civil Legal Services (CVCLS) Program for victims of crime and their immediate family members.
TAJF appointed to handle grantmaking responsibilities on behalf of the Court.
“ Immediate family member”: an individual who is related to a victim within the second degree by affinity or consanguinity
“ Claimant”: (a) authorized individual acting on behalf of a victim; (b) individual who legally assumes or voluntarily pays medical/burial expenses of a victim as a result of CIC; (c) dependant of a victim who died as a result of CIC; (d) immediate family or household member who requires psychiatric care or incurs certain expenses as a result of CIC; or authorized individual acting on behalf of child described in (c) or (d)
Relate the injury to the criminally injurious conduct.
For example: “Jane received cuts to her forehead, bruising on her arms and suffered mental distress.”
Connection Of Legal Services to the Criminal Injury
Describe how the legal services provided to the client are related to the criminal injury.
Use Plain English
“ The protective order will help to protect Jane from further physical and mental abuse.”
“ The food stamps/other public benefits that we seek on Jane’s behalf will allow Jane to spend her money on rent rather than on food/other public benefits so that Jane doesn’t have to continue to live with and be financially dependent upon her abuser.”
“ Eviction representation will allow Jane to stay in her rental unit and protect her from eviction caused by the actions of her abuser the day that he injured her.”
“ Representing Jane before the Truancy Court due to the unexcused absences of her children that occurred after and as the result of her injuries and while she was recovering and hiding from her abuser will allow her to avoid a truancy conviction.”
“ Representing Jane before an ALJ at her Social Security Disability hearing will allow her to receive disability income that will assist her in remaining free from her abuser.”
“ Representing Jane at the TWC unemployment benefits hearing will allow her to keep her job, from which she was terminated following missed days at work due to the injuries she sustained by her abuser.”
SCREENING AND INTAKE FORMS. DOCUMENTING THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN THE TYPE OF CRIMINAL ACTIVITY INVOLVED, THE SPECIFIC INJURY SUFFERED BY THE VICTIM AND THE LEGAL SERVICE TO BE RENDERED
The Client’s file should contain documentation that describes:
(1) the criminally injurious conduct;
(2) the injury; and
(3) the connection of legal services to the injury.
CVCLS INTAKE SCREENING FORM, developed by the OAG
must be completed and retained by Grantees for audit
allows for easy documentation of these three factors
Good practice: keep the completed form in the Client’s file.
Can be incorporated into the Case Management System of some Grantees.
Victims of Family Violence Can Get Waiver for Electric and Telephone Service Deposit: (800-525-1978) www.tcfv.org/WaiverofGasServiceDeposit.pdf
Lite-Up Texas (Low-Income Telephone and Electric Utility Program: LIHEAP (866-454-8387) www.puc.state.tx.us/ocp/assist/liteup/index.cfm
Link Up Program (Reduced Cost Installation of Telephone Service:
Wills Clinic (Free Legal Will Services for Low-Income Persons
By appointment Only: call 271-9846 or 212-3700 (espanol) to be evaluated
Citizenship Classes in San Antonio 210-241-2759
Women’s Support Group of the Family Violence Prevention Services in San Antonio: 210-930-3669
Internet References Texas Online/ Victim Resource s (OAG, DPS, TDCJ) City of Austin Crime Victim Services (Austin) Corpus Christi Crime Victim Services (Corpus Christi) Dallas Police Department Crime Victims Services (Dallas) El Paso Police Department Crime Victims Services (El Paso) Harris County Crime Victim Services (Houston) San Antonio Police Department Crime Victim Services (San Antonio)
Best Practice is an idea that asserts that there is a method, process, activity, incentive or reward that is more effective at delivering a particular outcome than any other technique, method, process, etc. The idea is that with proper processes, checks, and testing, a desired outcome can be delivered with fewer problems and unforeseen complications.
“ Our client is a victim of domestic violence. We referred her to Aid to Victims of Domestic Abuse. We assisted AVDA in providing translations services while continuing to provide case management to our client.”
Maribel* had been happily married for two years until her husband lost his job and began drinking heavily. He began to abuse her physically and emotionally, and would not allow her to seek medical attention for her severe injuries. Maribel tried to leave him several times, but her husband threatened to kill her and their daughter if she left. Finally, Maribel was able to flee to a woman’s shelter with her child. She came to our office for help last month, and we were able to file a petition for divorce and full custody of her daughter for Maribel, as well as obtain a protective order against her ex-husband. Maribel has relocated to another city with her daughter, where she volunteers at a local woman’s shelter.
Nancy* was offered a job as a nanny and housekeeper by a U.S. family vacationing in the Philippines. Nancy was offered $1,200 per month to care for the family's children and to perform general housekeeping duties. Once Nancy arrived in the US, her passport was taken from her, and she was told that her pay would be reduced in order to cover the costs of her travel. Ultimately, Nancy was paid between $50-$200 per month for being on-call 24 hours per day caring for the children and tending to the house. Nancy was also prohibited from making telephone calls to her family and from socializing with anyone outside of the home. The family frequently lent Nancy to their friends, and kept the money that was paid to her. Unbeknownst to the family, Nancy made a friend online. This friend eventually purchased a bus ticket in Nancy's name, and Nancy was able to escape from her employer's home and make it to the bus station. While on the bus traveling through West Texas, Nancy was detained by U.S. Border Patrol for not being in possession of any legal immigration documents. When Nancy explained that her employer had taken her documents from her and forced her to work for years without adequate pay, Border Patrol contacted the El Paso Anti-Human Trafficking Taskforce. The Taskforce, of which our office is a member, immediately began working together to provide protection and legal assistance to Nancy. Last month, we obtained certification for Nancy as a victim of human trafficking, who is now in the process of applying for benefits under the Trafficking Victims Protection Act.
Top 10 Things to Remember About Public Relations and Media Advocacy 10) The media have tight deadlines- know them and plan ahead (ex. TV news broadcast vs. newspaper); 9) Find the interesting client story (school child, volunteer, entrepreneur, etc.); 8) Circulate your name among the media outlets as an expert in your area; 7) Be flexible when last-minute fillers are needed (be their best friend when they need a fast turn-around); 6) Less is more- beware of the one-statement-too-many danger;
Top 10 Things to Remember About Public Relations and Media Advocacy, Continued 5) Media is more than TV and radio- (campus outlets, neighborhood news, church bulletins)- be creative; 4) Get on the speakers circuit (association meetings, conferences, community groups); 3) Small investment = large payback (bumper stickers, magnets, certificates of appreciation, etc.); 2) Clients tell their stories best; 1) Remember the sound-bite rule (taken out of context how will your statement sound/look?)