Breaking News Stories
Covering Specific Victim Populations
Other Considerations
Special Challenges in Reporting
Special Challenges in Reporting
High Impact Stories
Working With Service Providers
Creating Ethics Policy
Victims Right to Privacy
Self Care for Journalists
Resources and Promising Practices
Glossary and Endnotes

Link to A News Media Guide for Victim Service Providers
Link to Crime Victim Outreach Tip Sheets

Table of Contents

Victim Media Advocacy:
How to Facilitate Sensitive and Respectful Treatment of Crime Victims


1. Introduction
a. Impact and influence of news media reporting
b. Issues, tips, techniques, guidelines, concerns and best practices

2. Breaking News Stories
a. Asking for the interview
b. Dealing with logistics
c. Conducting the interview

3. Covering Specific Victim Populations
a. Homicide
b. Sexual assault and rape
c. Domestic violence
d. Drunk driving
e. Vulnerable populations (children/elderly)

4. Other Considerations
a. Rookies covering crime and breaking news
b. Photographers and videographers have special responsibilities
c. Editors can introduce problems
d. "Pack Journalism" puts pressure on victims
e. News values can conflict with victim priorities
f. Improving cultural competency
g. Anyone can cover anything
h. Is it time to reconsider sharing stories prior to publication
i. A focus on the perpetrator
j. Lack of opportunities to hold reporters and editors accountable

5. Guidelines for Feature Stories
a. Requesting a story
b. Anniversary stories
c. Continuing mystery
d. Personal profile
e. The journalist as betrayer
f. The accountability of the freelancing
g. An appropriate role for experts
h. Identifying reliable experts
i. The "poster child" problem

6. Special Challenges in Reporting
a. Victims should expect multimedia coverage
b. There are no more local-only stories
c. Print reporters shooting video need training on victim issues
d. Citizen journalists need information on victim issues
e. Online articles and mistakes can live forever
f. News organizations need victim input in decisions on citizen comments

7. High Impact Stories

8. Working with Service Providers
a. Victim advocates
b. Victim service providers
c. Citizen volunteers
d. Provider and media advisory panels
e. Offer tours of the newsroom

9. Creating Ethics Policies

10. Victims' Right to Privacy
a. Intrusion
b. Cameras in the courtroom
c. Private facts
d. False light

11. Self Care for Journalists
a. Spend the time you need to process your thoughts and feelings
b. Take mini-breaks whenever possible
c. Derive confidence from your skills and experience
d. Learn about trauma
e. Turn to supportive peers
f. Turn to family and friends
g. Explore opportunities for spiritual and creative expression
h. Take care of your body
i. Seek help sooner rather than later

12. Resources and Promising Practices
a. Resources
b. Promising Practices

13. Glossary