Meeting Newcomers’ Protection Needs Part I: A Collection of Resources on Community Safety and Crime

Refugees and newcomers are survivors of violence, persecution, and other complex situations that arise before and during resettlement. After long and dangerous migration journeys, many newcomers believe they are finally safe when they arrive in their new communities. However, life in the U.S. is not always free from peril and discrimination. Refugee and newcomer clients may, at times, be exposed to community violence, crime, and other safety issues. Switchboard developed this resource list to enhance service providers’ knowledge of the safety and protection issues that impact clients and to identify beneficial resources to support them. For resources on protection from fraud and scams, see the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) handbook and posters on how to spot, avoid, and report scams, and Switchboard’s guide to Reporting Scams and Fraud to the Federal Trade Commission. For resources on sexual and gender-based violence, see Switchboard’s blog Meeting Newcomers’ Protection Needs Part II. The external resources contained in this blog post represent the views and opinions of their original creators and do not necessarily represent the views or opinions of Switchboard.

Client-Facing Safety and Protection Resources Settle In is available in 12 languages and includes multilingual multimedia resources for refugees and newcomers, as well as direct service providers. Topics related to safety and protection include Rights & Responsibilities, Avoiding Fraud, and Safe Spaces.

Community Violence and Crime

The Office for Victims of Crime (OVC) provides resources and assistance to survivors of crime in the United States. OVC funds programs in multiple areas such as Human Trafficking, Elder Fraud & Abuse, and Terrorism & Mass Violence. Through funding established in the Victims of Crime Act (VOCA), crime victims may be eligible for benefits such as reimbursement of medical services, mental health counseling, and lost wages and other costs incurred due to a crime. OVC operates a service locator to find crime victim assistance and compensation programs in the city/state where the crime occurred. Additionally, OVC facilitates training through the OVC Training and Technical Assistance Center (OVC TTAC). * Refugee-serving organizations may apply for grants through this site to become VOCA programming providers.

Human Trafficking

Child-Focused Human Trafficking Resources:

Hate Crimes and Discrimination

Staff Safety, Crisis Intervention, and De-escalation

  • Switchboard has several resources on de-escalation, crisis intervention, and staff care that can help refugee service providers, supervisors, and managers stay safe while working with clients experiencing crisis. The following are some highlights from our resource library:

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