2018 National Crime Victims’ Rights Week
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — The week of April 8-14, 2018, is designated as National Crime Victims’ Rights Week. Various agencies across the country will host events to raise awareness about crime victims’ issues and rights and introduce the community to the important resources and services available.
The Office for Victims of Crime (OVC) of the U.S. Department of Justice (Department) leads communities throughout the country in their annual observances of National Crime Victims’ Rights Week by promoting victims’ rights and honoring crime victims and those who advocate on their behalf. This year’s theme—Expand the Circle: Reach All Victims—highlights how the investment of communities in crime victims expands the opportunity for victims to disclose their victimization, connect with services, and receive the support they need. The theme also acknowledges the many barriers facing victims of crime especially those with disabilities, LGBTQ victims, older adults, speakers with limited English proficiency, American Indians and Alaska Natives, and others from historically marginalized communities.
In 2004, Congress passed The Crime Victims’ Rights Act (CVRA), which grants victims in federal criminal proceedings certain enforceable rights, including the right to be reasonably heard at public court proceedings and receive full and timely restitution as provided by law. The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Tennessee has dedicated victim-witness personnel that serve federal crime victims across the district’s 41 counties.
“The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Tennessee is committed to assisting victims of federal crimes and ensuring they are afforded their rights under the Crime Victims’ Rights Act,” said U.S. Attorney J. Douglas Overbey. “National Crime Victims’ Rights Week is a time to celebrate progress, raise awareness of victims’ rights and services, and stand with those whose lives have been forever changed by the criminal acts they have endured,” added U.S. Attorney Overbey.
OVC and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Tennessee encourage widespread participation in National Crime Victims’ Week events and other victim-related observances throughout the year. The U.S. Department of Justice will host OVC’s annual National Crime Victims’ Service Awards Ceremony on April 13, 2018, in Washington, D.C., to honor individuals, organizations, teams, and programs for their outstanding efforts on behalf of crime victims.
Some of the events scheduled in east Tennessee in which members of the U.S. Attorney’s Office will be participating include:
- Sunday, April 8, 2018- 2:00 p.m. - Joan Berry’s Remembrance Walk and Ceremony - Volunteer Landing, Knoxville.
- Wednesday, April 11, 2018 – 11:00 a.m. - District Attorney James B. Dunn will host a commemorative ceremony honoring and remembering victims whose lives have been touched by violent crime on the lawn of the Cocke County Court House, Newport, Tennessee.
- Thursday, April 12, 2018 – 10:00 a.m. – Tennessee Board of Parole – Memorial Park, Johnson City – Ceremony including Voice for Victim Award
- Thursday, April 12, 2018 – 2:00 a.m. – Tennessee Board of Parole – Knoxville Police Department/Family Justice Center – Ceremony including Voice for Victim Award
- Friday, April 13, 2018 – 10:00 a.m. – Tennessee Board of Parole – Coolidge Park, Chattanooga – Ceremony including Voice for Victim Award
For additional information about National Crime Victims’ Rights Week and how to assist victims in your community, visit OVC’s website at www.ovc.gov.