Established in 1986 within the Division of Criminal Justice, the State Office of Victim-Witness Advocacy (SOVWA) has been providing assistance to victims and witnesses and their families across the State.
Through collaboration and coordination with the law enforcement community, public agencies, nonprofit service providing agencies, faith-based community programs, and others, a more victim-centered response is possible.
In addition to providing assistance to victims and witnesses and their families, the SOVWA has oversight of the 21 County Offices of Victim-Witness Advocacy within the county prosecutors’ offices. The SOVWA provides technical assistance and support, provides annual training in the areas of victim rights and services, and conducts program evaluations of the County Offices of Victim-Witness Advocacy.
The SOVWA is also responsible for administering several federal grant programs and the State Victim-Witness Advocacy Fund, which supports the operations of the SOVWA.
The mission of the State Office of Victim-Witness Advocacy is to support and expand victim-witness services across the State along with the law enforcement community. The goal of this program is to provide victims and witnesses with services that will help them cope with the aftermath of victimization and help make their participation in the system less difficult and burdensome. The state office works closely with the county offices and provides funding for many of their programs from federal and state funds.