Attorney General Hardy Myers Announces Creation Of New Division Of Crime Victims' Services At Department of Justice
Attorney General Hardy Myers today announced the creation of a new division within the Oregon Department of Justice (DOJ): the Crime Victims' Services Division (CVSD). The change elevates the existing Crime Victims' Assistance Section (CVAS) of DOJ's Criminal Justice Division to the highest status in DOJ's organization, joining seven other divisions: Administrative Services, Appellate, Child Support, Civil Enforcement, Criminal Justice, General Counsel and Trial.
"The time has come for DOJ to raise its services for crime victims, and for organizations that serve crime victims, to an organizational level that fully recognizes the importance of that work," stated Myers. "Oregon has greatly progressed in its ability to serve victims of crime and the accomplishments of my CVAS colleagues in that progress deserve this further recognition and respect."
Myers also announced that Cynthia Stinson, the current CVAS director, will be director of the new division.
CVAS was originally formed in 1978 to administer the state's Crime Victims' Compensation Program, which was enacted by the 1977 Legislative Assembly. In the thirty years since its inception, the program has provided benefits to thousands of victims, and, through continued actions of the Legislative Assembly and voter initiatives, the responsibilities have expanded. CVAS administers two federal grant programs, the Victims of Crime Act and the Violence Against Women Act; the state's Child Abuse Multidisciplinary Intervention program; the Oregon Domestic and Sexual Violence Services Fund; the Sexual Assault Victims' Emergency Medical Response Fund; and the Address Confidentiality Program. CVAS has administered the Crime Victims' Rights' Compliance Project, which will soon transfer from a temporary federal grant to a permanent state program, and CVAS also distributes funds to, and monitors, the District Attorney-based Victims Assistance Programs in all 36 counties.
The organizational change from CVAS to CVSD will take effect May 1, 2008. For more information about the crime victim services administered by DOJ, visit www.doj.state.or.us/crimev/index.shtml.
Stephanie Soden, (503) 378-6002