Office of Alameda DA Helped More than 22,500 Victims and Their Families in 2023

Special to the Vanguard

Oakland, CA – On Wednesday, Alameda County DA Pamela Price held a press conference where she delivered a year-end report on the services it has delivered to victims and their families.

The Office also announced the formation of the DAO’s first Victim Advisory Commission which builds on the progress of the past eleven months.

“Victims are a top priority for my administration,” said Alameda County District Attorney Pamela Price. “In the past eleven months, our office has been able to reduce huge backlogs, build a larger support team for victims, and increase our speed and equity in service delivery for victims and their families.”

DA Price was joined by leading advocates and members of her executive team who reported a long list of achievements.

Among them, hiring 12 victim-witness advocates to serve Alameda County’s culturally diverse and multilingual community and adding 7 clinicians to the Family Justice Center.

DA Price has hired multi-lingual speakers, the first transgender and indigenous advocates, and more African American advocates to dramatically diversify the advocate division.

“When we got into the office, one of the first things we looked at, how are we providing services to victims?” said DA Price.

“My office has something called a Victim Witness Assistance division that was started in 2005,” she explained. “When we got there, that division was understaffed, underfunded, and underappreciated.”

Price continued, “And because I am a victim myself, having been a survivor of domestic violence and sexual assault, I understood that it was critical that we have our first line of contact with the community, that those folks be supported.”

She said, “So we immediately began surveying the entire victim unit. We have hired and increased the staff by thirty-five percent. We’ve diversified the advocates hiring more African-American advocates, hiring Cantonese or Asian advocates that speak Cantonese and Mandarin hiring our first two mom or our first two maya indigenous advocates who speak mum and hiring our first transgender advocate.

“We also funded the services that they need and provided training as well as resources. They no longer have to use their personal cell phones to call victims. They have a county-paid cell phone, and their mileage is reimbursed. It was some little things and some big things that was critical to realigning that division.”

In 2023, the Alameda County District Attorney’s Office has provided over 60,000 services for victims and their families people so far this year and provided compensation and burial expenses in excess of $750,000.

The launch of the county’s first Victim Advisory Commission builds off this new tradition of progress. It is the third community commission created by District Attorney Price since she took office, following the Mental Health Commission and the Reentry Commission, and is designed to ensure accountability and inspire innovative solutions through the participation of impacted community members.

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