If you have been the victim of a crime and received assistance from the Victim Services Unit, please complete this victim services survey to provide feedback. Your response is highly appreciated and will help us to improve our ability to serve victims of crime. We value your input.
Coping During the Holiday Season
The holidays are a time of joy for many people but for those individuals experiencing victimization, a traumatic event, or the sudden death of a loved one; the holiday season can be stressful or sad. Individuals can experience depression, anxiety, self blame, sleep disturbances, irritability, and loss of enjoyment for the upcoming events around the holiday season. Be mindful and pay attention to those around you who may need extra support during the holidays. Showing your caring support is one of the greatest gifts you can give someone who is grieving.
Realize that due to the unexpected changes in your life which were out of your control, you may need to modify your expectations for the holidays. Give yourself permission to appreciate the upcoming holiday season and recognize that it may not be as joyful as you have experienced in previous years. Participate in something you still enjoy doing such as reading, exercising, talking walks, going to the mountains, watching a funny or inspiring movie, journaling, or engaging in your favorite hobby even if it is only for a short period of time.
Spend time with loved ones and friends. Spend time with those who comfort you. Create a plan for what you wish to accomplish during the holidays or allow someone help you with this task. This can include whether or not to decorate your home, whether to buy gifts for friends and loved ones, or even whether to attend holiday events and parties. You make not want to participate in activities you have found enjoyable in the past, and that is okay. Don't be afraid to say no to invitations that may be emotionally draining or that create a feeling of obligation to buy presents for everyone. Keep it simple. If the thought of choosing and wrapping gifts seems too overwhelming, forego gifts altogether. You may also want to consider enlisting a friend to shop for you or help you shop. Consider gift cards for those on your shopping list. A gift can be a donation to a worthy charity in the name of a loved one. A simple gift of a note penned to friends and loved ones expressing how important they are in your life is a healing, thoughtful, and very powerful gift.
Create New Traditions. Remind yourself that you may want to create traditions that are different than those you have practiced in the past. Take each minute, hour, and day as a milestone that you have accomplished. Time is part of the healing process. There is no timetable on grief or healing from victimization. It is an ongoing process. A web blog called "All My Loose Ends" explains grief this way: "'Grief is really just love; It is all the love you want to give, but cannot." "Grief is love with no place to go". Creating new traditions and new milestones is a way for the love to be passed on in memory of your loved one and the new person you are becoming.
Remember to eat. Nourishment is important in your healing process. Many individuals experience nausea and loss of appetite. Choose drinks or foods that you can tolerate to keep up your calorie intake. Water is important for hydration and drink flavored drink add-ins may make it more palatable to keep you from getting dehydrated. Consider smoothies, shakes, or any other foods that are calorie and vitamin rich, even in small quantities. Keep alcohol to a minimum. It can exacerbate your feelings of grief and loss and rarely numbs the pain for any length of time. Unless prescribed to you by a physician, decline the offer of sleeping pills, anxiety medication, or any other medication offered by well meaning friends and family to help you cope.
Accept help. Friends and family want to help but often ask you to tell them what you need. Here is a list of tasks they can help you with during the holidays and after the holidays are over:
• Ask them to cook a meal or several; freeze one for a future meal
• Help with home repairs or chores such as house cleaning or laundry
• Baby-sit for you if you have children
• Spend time being with you, even if there is no activity planned
• Do yard work, take out the trash, rake the leaves, or shovel snow for you.
• Do small shopping errands for you
• Plan grocery runs by ordering on-line orders and allowing friends or family pick up your order
• Help with phone calls that need to be made or texts and e-mails that need to be returned
• Do some driving errands for you
• Accompany you on errands as a source of support
• Put up or take down Christmas or Hannakuh decorations.
If you are feeling sad, overwhelmed, or depressed, talk to someone. If you don’t feel comfortable talking to a family member friend, or your clergy, or if you are alone, you may wish to seek grief counselors, support groups, or therapists specific to your grief and loss, or victimization. The Broomfield Police Department Victim Services website has a list of resources available in the Broomfield area. You may also call the Broomfield Police Department Victim Services Unit at 303.438.6429 or 303.438.6471 for additional referrals.
Crisis Intervention & Follow-Up
Advocates can assist in sorting through the confusing feelings victims may experience immediately following a crime or traumatic event, as well as later on. Advocates can help a victim manage one part of the problem at a time and regain control.
Resources and Referrals
Advocates use community resources, as well as the victim's own resources, to help build a network of support. Many resources are available in the community, including, but not limited to: financial assistance, victim compensation funds; counseling; legal resources; medical resources; transportation; household assistance; child care; assistance in dealing with creditors, employers, and landlords; services for victims with special needs; and translation services.
If you or someone you know has been the victim of a crime and need assistance, please call the Victim Services Unit.
ICE Victim Notification Program
The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), is committed to protecting the public and ensuring that the rights of victims are carefully observed. HSI administers the Victim Notification Program, which allows eligible victims and witnesses to obtain reliable and timely information regarding a criminal alien's release from custody. Victims and witnesses are required to register with HSI in order to receive notification of a criminal alien's release. Please visit http://www.ice.gov/victim-notification/ for more information.
You may also call the Broomfield Police Department Victim Services Unit at 303.438.6429 or 303.438.6471 for additional information.
Colorado Adult Sexual Assault Reporting Options
A victim chooses to obtain a medical forensic exam but at that time chooses to not participate in the criminal justice system. Evidence and information to law enforcement is released without victim identifying information. An anonymous reporting victim is consenting to evidence storage only.