Source: (1995) Justice Professional. 9(1):1-15.

This essay advocates providing all crime victims with advocates, free of charge, through mechanisms that are parallel to the way indigent defendants are provided with legal counsel. Advocates can pressure officials and agencies to be more responsible and accountable for their actions, and can make decision making more individualized and less rigid, unimaginative, and beyond community control. Victims supported by advocates might be able to nudge the system toward providing real protection to society, meaningful rehabilitation to offenders, job training opportunities and placement for inmates so that they might make restitution. Also needed are more experimental programs for victim-offender reconciliation and restoring harmony to strife-torn, crime-ridden communities.