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Victims Center Sees Changes In 40 Years

October 31, 2017 07:19 PM

(ABC 6 News) - It’s an organization that has helped thousands of people over four decades … many of them in their darkest hours.

“I’d say that the mission really for our clientele really is growth and recovery," Tori Miller told us.

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The year was 1977, and a new organization opened its doors in Austin to meet a growing need.

"It's very traumatic to be a victim," Tori Miller said.

“We have seen domestic violence victims, sexual assault victims, robbery, burglary, theft we really provide services to a variety of victimization" victim advocate Linnea Garness added.

It opened its doors as the "Victim's Crisis Center". Today, it's the Crime Victims Resource Center.

And the name isn't the only thing that has changed

"40 years ago I would say that the agency was very driven by female clients" director Tori Miller said.

And *that* has shifted somewhat

"There were male and female clients who had  various victimizations in their life so the services started to expand at that point."

And Austin itself was changing.

"Fast forwarding 40 years later the demographics of Austin are very different, we are challenged with language barriers" CVRC director Tori Miller told us.

The addition of a bi-lingual advocate increased Hispanic clientele at the center by 105 percent in the past year. And that’s not the only change:

"We have a lot of technology that can contribute to victimization," Tori Miller said.

And that brings us back to use the word "resource".

"One victim might come in and need one thing in relation to their victimization, and a similar victim could come in and need completely different services" CVRC director Tori Miller explained.

"So really just trying in a holistic approach to finding them the resources that they need to move them forward.”

“If the client or victim walks away feeling empowered and feeling good about their situation, that's a success in my book” added victim advocate Linnea Garness.


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Copyright 2017 - KAAL-TV, LLC A Hubbard Broadcasting Company

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