Commerce City and Brighton seeking applicants for volunteer victim advocates

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By The Staff

COMMERCE CITY — The Brighton and Commerce City Police Department Victim Services Unit is accepting applications for volunteer victim advocates. 

Volunteer advocates provide on-scene contact with victims and witnesses of violent crime, sudden death, and other emergency situations.  They provide immediate crisis intervention, individual and family support, provide information about the criminal justice system, ensuring victim rights are upheld and immediate needs of victims are met.

“This is a great opportunity to become involved in your community, providing an invaluable service,” said Kim Messina, victim services coordinator.

Each volunteer is required to respond in both Brighton and Commerce City; volunteer a minimum of four, 12-hour shifts per month, including evenings, weekends and occasional holidays; and attend one monthly in-service meeting. Volunteers are required to respond within 30 minutes of dispatch contact.

In order to participate, volunteers must:

• Be at least 21 years of age;

• Be able to undergo and pass a background investigation;

• Be a holder of a valid Colorado driver’s license with a good record;

• Complete 40 hours of victim services training;

• Be compassionate and non-judgmental with victims of crime;

• Be able to maintain confidentiality;

• Have strong interpersonal skills;

• Have self-motivation;

• Be able to perform under emotional and adverse conditions;

• Be able to respond to a variety of different locations; and

• Be willing to commit to at least 12 months.

Training will begin in September.

In May, Brighton and Commerce City joined forces to create a joint victim services unit, which allows for enhanced quality services, reduction in response time and increased resources in times of critical incidents.

The Brighton unit began in the late 1980s. Last year, the unit served 1,157 victims and witnesses of crime and personal tragedy and responded on scene to 302 call outs.

Visit www.brightonco.gov/312/Victim-Services

or contact Kim Messina at 303-655-2308 or kmessina@brightonco.gov.