Welcome!

News Feed Item

Crime Victim Funds Leave Black Men Behind: Colorlines Releases Third Installment of "Life Cycles of Inequity" Series

NEW YORK, Aug. 4, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- In the third installment of its investigative series "Life Cycles of Inequity," Colorlines released today an unprecedented investigation into crime victims funds and how they under-serve those who are among those most likely to be victims of violent crime – young black men. "Criminals, Victims, and the Black Men Left Behind," authored by Carla Murphy and reported in partnership with the Investigative Fund at the Nation Institute, raises profound questions about who's considered a "victim" – and what consequences society pays for that narrow definition. 

Race Forward: The Center for Racial Justice Innovation Logo

The Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) of 1984 established an $11 billion fund to support victims by providing services and compensation necessary in the aftermath of violent crime. This federal program is active in 50 states, and many states have their own programs as well. However, victims are often barred from receiving compensation because they are not deemed "innocent," and local community groups often don't know this money exists, leaving victims, their families, and communities shouldering the financial and psychological costs of crime.

"The biases that exist around black men lead people to think of them first and foremost as perpetrators," said Kai Wright, Colorlines Editor-at-Large. "Law enforcement should not be the arbiter of who's a victim."

The investigation is set in Chicago, with its now infamous rate of gun violence, as a case study in the larger problem. In one of the hospitals Murphy looked at, 80% of gunshot victims returned home, still requiring a range of after-care services that they couldn't afford and financial support as they recover and get back to work. Currently, the nation's victim compensation programs reimburse under 3 percent of crime victims, and Illinois is one of the least generous. Still, some say the biggest failure of these funds may lie in the near absence of funding for community groups that could provide counseling and support to heal and to interrupt violence and retaliations.

Murphy's year-long investigation of this issue included substantive research on the collection and distribution of crime victim funds; a review of the history of the victim's rights movement; and interviews with service providers, community groups youth, clergy, doctors, social workers, academics, lawyers, Department of Justice, agencies that help decide how the funds are distributed -- and of course victims, parents of victims, direct service victim advocates (some of whom have been in the field for 20-30 years, since the founding of law that provides these funds), and people working for policy change.

As part of this third installment of "Life Cycles of Inequity," which looks at the relationship between black men, crime and justice, filmmaker André Robert Lee produced "Out of Prison, but Not Free." The video features men formerly incarcerated in Louisiana's infamous Angola state penitentiary, discussing the challenges of reentering society with their families, lovers, friends and coworkers. This video is critical to a discussion on those impacted by the criminal justice system because Louisiana incarcerates a greater share of its residents than any government in the world, and nearly one in seven black men in the state are either in prison or on parole or probation.

An online discussion will be held on Twitter Tuesday, August 5th at 1:00pmET. Community members will share their personal stories and solutions--both personal and systemic--with Colorlines' 58,600 followers, led by Colorlines (@colorlines), using hashtag #livesofblackmen.

Throughout 2014, Colorlines' "Life Cycles of Inequity" series will focus upon on a life stage or event that for black men in the United States is uniquely confined by broad, societal inequities. We began with high school boys—Trayvon Martin's peers—and we will conclude with the early mortality that takes too many of our fathers, uncles and partners in their middle ages. Previous installments in the series include:

●     Race, Disability and the School-to-Prison Pipeline 
●     Navigating Implicit Bias in the Classroom [Video] 
●     From Disability to Criminality [Infographic] 
●     A Day in the Shop [Photos] 
●     Why Young, Black Men Can't Work 
●     'I Can't Be Boxed In' [Video]

ABOUT COLORLINES
Colorlines is a daily news site where race matters, featuring award-winning investigative reporting and news analysis. Colorlines is published by Race Forward, a national organization that advances racial justice through research, media and practice.

Media Contact: Rebekah, Spicuglia, [email protected], 347-864-0519

Logo - http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20131106/DC11196LOGO

SOURCE Colorlines

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
"DX encompasses the continuing technology revolution, and is addressing society's most important issues throughout the entire $78 trillion 21st-century global economy," said Roger Strukhoff, Conference Chair. "DX World Expo has organized these issues along 10 tracks with more than 150 of the world's top speakers coming to Istanbul to help change the world."
"We focus on SAP workloads because they are among the most powerful but somewhat challenging workloads out there to take into public cloud," explained Swen Conrad, CEO of Ocean9, Inc., in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
"As we've gone out into the public cloud we've seen that over time we may have lost a few things - we've lost control, we've given up cost to a certain extent, and then security, flexibility," explained Steve Conner, VP of Sales at Cloudistics,in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
"We provide IoT solutions. We provide the most compatible solutions for many applications. Our solutions are industry agnostic and also protocol agnostic," explained Richard Han, Head of Sales and Marketing and Engineering at Systena America, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
"We are focused on SAP running in the clouds, to make this super easy because we believe in the tremendous value of those powerful worlds - SAP and the cloud," explained Frank Stienhans, CTO of Ocean9, Inc., in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
"Peak 10 is a hybrid infrastructure provider across the nation. We are in the thick of things when it comes to hybrid IT," explained , Chief Technology Officer at Peak 10, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
"I think DevOps is now a rambunctious teenager – it’s starting to get a mind of its own, wanting to get its own things but it still needs some adult supervision," explained Thomas Hooker, VP of marketing at CollabNet, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at DevOps Summit at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
"We are still a relatively small software house and we are focusing on certain industries like FinTech, med tech, energy and utilities. We help our customers with their digital transformation," noted Piotr Stawinski, Founder and CEO of EARP Integration, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
"We've been engaging with a lot of customers including Panasonic, we've been involved with Cisco and now we're working with the U.S. government - the Department of Homeland Security," explained Peter Jung, Chief Product Officer at Pulzze Systems, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
Everything run by electricity will eventually be connected to the Internet. Get ahead of the Internet of Things revolution and join Akvelon expert and IoT industry leader, Sergey Grebnov, in his session at @ThingsExpo, for an educational dive into the world of managing your home, workplace and all the devices they contain with the power of machine-based AI and intelligent Bot services for a completely streamlined experience.
Any startup has to have a clear go –to-market strategy from the beginning. Similarly, any data science project has to have a go to production strategy from its first days, so it could go beyond proof-of-concept. Machine learning and artificial intelligence in production would result in hundreds of training pipelines and machine learning models that are continuously revised by teams of data scientists and seamlessly connected with web applications for tenants and users.
"We're here to tell the world about our cloud-scale infrastructure that we have at Juniper combined with the world-class security that we put into the cloud," explained Lisa Guess, VP of Systems Engineering at Juniper Networks, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
"I will be talking about ChatOps and ChatOps as a way to solve some problems in the DevOps space," explained Himanshu Chhetri, CTO of Addteq, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @DevOpsSummit at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
"We are an IT services solution provider and we sell software to support those solutions. Our focus and key areas are around security, enterprise monitoring, and continuous delivery optimization," noted John Balsavage, President of A&I Solutions, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
Your homes and cars can be automated and self-serviced. Why can't your storage? From simply asking questions to analyze and troubleshoot your infrastructure, to provisioning storage with snapshots, recovery and replication, your wildest sci-fi dream has come true. In his session at @DevOpsSummit at 20th Cloud Expo, Dan Florea, Director of Product Management at Tintri, provided a ChatOps demo where you can talk to your storage and manage it from anywhere, through Slack and similar services with...