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Crime Victims Board is in need of a specialized Domestic Violence Unit

Posted Oct 02 2009 3:07pm

I have posted another letter to the shelter and to CVB about my claim. Every single day, CVB visits my website and reads my newest posts--although they never seem to do more than that. I have written a letter to the Governor and to CVB about this state program needing a specialized domestic violence unit that handles only the claims of abuse victims. After you read my letter below, you will understand why this is important for victims of domestic violence applying to CVB for compensation. I would only hope that after CVB reads this post, maybe they will contact me and act on implementing this in the near future.

Rockland Family Shelter:

Before I begin, still no compensation from CVB after many months of trying to answer all of their requests.

CVB still needs a physicians statement from my surgeon, who has not responded to my request in the past two weeks. This statement needs to contain written documentation of the disability period from March 2007 and what % the injury was related to the crime (100% in my case). My doctors are not responding to me and will not give me a statement for some reason, or return my phone calls (nothing surprising there, they do not want to be involved). Another problem here is when I was severely battered by my husband, he would not leave my side at the hospital or the doctor's offices and, therefore, I was not able to admit to the abuse at the time. My regular doctor (at the time) was aware of the reason my leg was broken, but never recorded it, it is not in his files. This, I am sure, will be a problem for CVB...and maybe if CVB had a domestic violence unit handling victims of this crime (something I suggested to the Governor), they would understand that most women that are beaten by their husbands cannot report out of fear and hence, there is no record of the abuse on file in hospitals or offices. I am one of those women who could not report the abuse to the hospital staff or the doctors at the time.

What do I do now?

Does this mean I do not qualify for compensation because I could not report the abuse to doctors and the % related to injury was not recorded? To be honest, I feel completely uncomfortable calling the staff again, asking for this statement. I am slowly getting tired of explaining how my husband broke my leg three times and how his violence has permanently ruined my leg and injured neck. And as far as my neck injury goes, that was never reported. That was the first act of violence committed against me, and like most victims, I did not go to the doctor initially for this trauma. Months later I had severe pain and went to the ER for my neck, I have this documentation, but again, my husband was at my side and I blamed the condition on something unrelated while at the ER. So, I will need help calling these places and getting the requests taken care of again, there are so many that CVB has sent my way, I can barely keep up with them.

Lastly, CVB has also asked that I call my former employer, and ask them to fill out a statement about the crime-- they know nothing of this crime as I did not advertise that my husband was beating me to my employer, and once again, I feel very uncomfortable contacting them. This whole situation has made me very uncomfortable, and CVB's requests for DV victims seem almost unreasonable. They have police reports and doctor bills and I will be sending them more information shortly, but these few items I have mentioned here are almost impossible to obtain.

Thank You

Maria Phelps
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