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Code of Ethics

Every victim assistance professional, paid or volunteer, is expected to act with integrity, to treat all victims and survivors of crime with dignity and compassion, and to uphold principles of justice for accused and accusers alike. To this end, these guidelines govern the conduct for members of the CVAAA:


  1. In relationships with every victim or survivor of a crime, as well as secondary survivors, the CVAAA member shall:

    • Recognize the interests of the crime victim/survivor.

    • Respect the crime victim/survivor’s civil and legal rights.

    • Respect the crime victim/survivor’s rights to privacy and confidentiality, subject only to laws and regulations requiring disclosure of information to appropriate other sources.

    • Respond compassionately to each crime victim/survivor with service, which is appropriate and personalized.

    • Foster maximum self-determination end personal empowerment on the part of the crime victim/survivor.

    • Serve every victim/survivor of crime on behalf of the crime victim/survivor’s stated needs without regard to personal convictions.

    • Know and abide by the policies addressing conflict of interest within your own agency.

    • Observe the ethical imperative to have no sexual relations with crime victim/survivors, current or past, recognizing that to do so risks exploitation of the knowledge and trust derived from the professional relationship.

    • Make crime victim/survivor’s aware of services available within their area.

  2. In relationships with colleagues, allied professionals, and the public, the CVAAA member shall:

    • Conduct relationships with colleagues, allied professionals, and the public in such a way as to promote mutual respect, and improvement of service.

    • Encourage proficiency and excellence in service to victims among colleagues and allied professionals, paid and volunteer.

    • Provide professional support, guidance, and assistance to victim service providers who are new to the field in order to promote consistent quality and professionalism in service to victims of crime.

    • Encourage colleagues and allied professionals to receive training, supervision, resources and support required in their effort to assist crime victim/survivors.

    • Act to promote crime and violence prevention as a public service.

    • Respect the laws of the state of Arkansas and the United States.

  3. In her or his professional conduct, the CVAAA member shall:

    • Maintain high personal and professional standards in the capacity of a service provider and advocate for crime victim/survivors.

    • Seek and maintain proficiency in the delivery of services to crime victim/survivors.

    • Not discriminate against any victim, employee, colleague, allied professional, or member of the public on the basis of age, gender, disability, ethnicity, race, national origin, religious belief, or sexual orientation.

    • Respect the privacy and confidentiality of a crime victim/survivor as required by law and the policies of the member’s employer and/or victim services organization.

    • Know and adhere to the Code of Professional Ethics within one’s employment and/or victim services organization.

Updated 4.17.2010

Our Story

December 8, 2014

A Reflection on Our History

In reviewing the past minutes of the Crime Victims Assistance Association of Arkansas (CVAAA) it became apparent that the history is rich and well documented. The following shares with the CVAAA’s membership some of those historic highlights that were reflected in the minutes of CVAAA’s early beginnings and which continue today.

The earliest documented CVAAA minutes were from May 18, 2002. Approximately two years of planning occurred before official paperwork was filed with the State of Arkansas in July of 2004. During that two year period, several steps occurred. Anne Seymour, a nationally known victims advocate and consultant was engaged in November 2003 to work with our group to draft goals, objectives, mission statement and official title. This work group presented the draft at a two day conference on May 6-7, 2004.

On July 30, 2004 CVAAA became a tax exempt association whereby any contributions to the organization can be tax deductible. CVAAA’s by-laws stipulate that there will be an annual membership meeting, quarterly board meetings, and the fiscal year is set for July 1 – June 30. Four committees were established: advocacy committee, organization service committee, public awareness/public relations committee, and development committee.

The year of 2005 was a very active year for CVAAA. Max Snowden served as the first elected president while many of the other officers elected in the early years are either retired or moved on to other fields of work.

The first news letter was sent out in July 2005. President Max Snowden had some very encouraging comments. Max said, “Our association can have no higher priority than to ensure that the full measure of justice is available to every victim of crime in Arkansas and across the nation. In that regard, we must work to build collaboration to highlight the concerns of victims in program development, training and technical assistance, and research in best practices, evaluation and data collecting. While progress has been made in the field of victim issues, many challenges remain in realizing the vision of victim rights.”

This is still true today.

The field of victim’s services has had quite a lot of changes over the years. Many of the same organizations and individuals that helped support the organization have also supported the efforts of the Arkansas Victim Assistance Academy coordinated by UALR Criminal Justice Department with assistance from a steering committee of assisting organizations.

The annual efforts to commemorate Crime Victims’ Rights Week have been a major effort of the CVAAA. Over the past couple of years, we have worked hard to rebuild our membership base. If you are a member, we thank you! If you are not a member and would like to join, see the membership form. We will continue with your help to expand and continue our efforts and stand up and speak out for the rights of all victims of crime. It is imperative that we work together to ensure that all victims of crime are served and provided resources that enable them to heal, survive, thrive, and move forward.

Roberta Sick, CVAAA Board President, 2014-2016
Charlene S. James, CVAAA Board President, 2012-2014
Kenny Wilkerson, CVAAA Board President, 2008-2014
Max Snowden, CVAAA Board President, 2004-2008

Meet The Officers

Officers are elected every other year at the annual meeting of the member organization.

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