Victims Advocate Job Description and Career Outlook
Careers for victim advocates (or victims’ advocate) are growing as more professional and non-profit organizations embrace the importance of having someone on staff to work with the victims of crime or abuse. These positions are available in a wide array of fields including the areas of criminal justice, social services and community outreach, and are expected to grow by 21% according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Victim Advocate Job Description and Common Tasks
A victim advocate is trained to help victims cope with the stress and trauma that follows a situation involving crime or abuse. The situation can be brief and immediate, or have been sustained over time such as that experienced during spousal abuse.
Victims often have to manage a field of issues that may involve psychological, physical, financial and/or emotional stress. They often require expert care that involves listening to their questions and concerns, and then explaining what kind of options they have and the types of support systems that are in place in their community.
Victim Advocate Requirements and Training
A career as a victim advocate often begins with coursework in the social sciences. Most professional victim advocates have an associate’s, bachelor’s or master’s degree in psychology, criminal justice or social work.
This coursework is frequently coupled with a great deal of practical training in the arena of social work, as victim advocates must hone their skills in listening and using teamwork-oriented methods of problem-solving to work with their clients.
Victim Advocate Salary, Job Outlook, and Employers
Victim advocates are fast becoming a part of the traditional community landscape and so opportunities to pursue this career field are growing. They have been common in larger cities and suburban areas for some time, but now even smaller communities are seeing the benefits of supporting programs for victims of crime and abuse.
These professionals are often employed by non-profit organizations, state or federal legal offices, shelters and community centers, or act as independent consultants. Salaries vary by location, but can range anywhere from about $35,000 to $50,000.
Victims Advocate Career Related Degrees from Accredited Schools
University of Phoenix
- B.S. in Psychology
- A.A. in Psychology
- M.S. in Psychology
- MS in Psychology - General Psychology
- BS in Psychology
- MS in Psychology
Colorado Technical University Online
- Bachelor of Science in Psychology
- Associate of Science in General Studies
Stratford Career Institute
- Drug and Alcohol Treatment Specialist
University of the Rockies
- MA in Psychology, Career Management and Counseling Specialization
- Doctor of Psychology, Criminology and Justice Studies
- MA in Psychology, General Psychology
- MS - Counseling Psychology
- PhD - General Counselor Education and Supervision
- PsyD - School Psychology
The University of Liverpool
- MSc in Applied Psychology (General Psychology)
- MSc in Applied Psychology (Mental Health Psychology)
- MSc in Forensic Psychology and Criminal Investigation
Page Edited by Charles Sipe.