The Independent Civic Association Helping Victims of Violence was set up by volunteers in the victims’ counseling center in January 1999.
Crime victims and witnesses are people who enter the criminal trial without their own fault, against their will, and often with the prospect of additional stresses and injuries that will inflict investigations and criminal proceedings. But they cannot avoid it – the law is strict against them. At the same time, however, attention, sometimes anxious, is devoted to avoiding violations of the rights of the perpetrators, starting with the principle of the presumption of innocence, continuing to provide free legal assistance and representation in indicated cases to bullying practices.
Helping Victims of Violence – Victim Support Slovakia provides the services of lawyers, psychologists, and social counselors as much as possible with limited funding. However, it is clear that much more would be needed: to be on-line 24 hours a day, to be physically available as close as possible to people (in regional centers) at least on weekdays, to be able to send real-time volunteer assistance to the crime scene or clients’ home. All of this can be done relatively quickly if forces join.