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âEâ Other Victimization Surveys: International and U.S. State and Local Experience Walker (2006) summarizes the basic design features of 62 victimization- related surveys conducted by various countries, as part of an inventory spon- sored by the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe and the United Nations Ofï¬ce on Drugs and Crime. About two-thirds of these are standalone surveys speciï¬cally focusing on victimization, and the remainder are crime and victimization components of more general, omnibus surveys. All told, these surveys ranged in size from about 400 to 60,000 households (or up to 75,000 people); 7 countriesâ surveys include 10,000 or more per- sons and households, although several of these are omnibus population sur- veys that include a victimization component. The survey design features of selected international victimization surveysâincluding the National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS)âare summarized in Table E-1. Farrington et al. (2004) provide descriptions of both ofï¬cial-report and survey data sources in several countries, and Lynch (2006) summarizes international vic- timization surveys as a source for cross-national comparison. Some countriesâ victimization surveys clearly use the well-established U.S. NCVS as a template; so, too, do several of the victimization surveys that have been ï¬elded by individual states in the United States. Due to their cost, state victimization surveys tend to be one-shot efforts, although some states (e.g., Minnesota) have conducted several replications. 177
178 Table E-1 Design Features of Nation-Speciï¬c Victimization Surveys Design Feature USAa Australia b Canadac England & Walesd Swedene Netherlands f Scotland g Switzerland h Irelandi Sample Cross-Section No Yes Yes (rotated) Yes (rotated) Yes Yes Yes (rotated) Yes Yes RDD No No Yes No No No No No No Clustered Yes Yes Screening Uniï¬ed No Yes Yes No Yes Yes No Yes Yes Dense cuing Yes No No No No No No No Bounding Prior Interview No No No No No No Short/long ref period No Reference period 6 mo. 12 mo. 12 mo. 12 mo. 12 mo. 12 mo. 12 mo. 12 mo. 12 mo. Mode In-person Yes No No Yes Yes No Yes No Yes Phone Yes No Yes No No No No yes No Central CATI Yes j No Yes No No No No Yes No Self-administered No Yes No No No Yes No No No Series Yes No No Yes Yes No Yes Yes No Free-standing survey Yes No No Yes No Yes Yes Yes No a National Crime Victimization Survey. b Summarizes three national crime victim surveys; see Carcase (2004). c General Social SurveyâVictimization. d British Crime Survey. e Victimization component of annual Survey of Living Conditions. f Victim survey conducted by Statistics Netherlands; other victim surveys are conducted by the police, as described by Bijleveld and Smit (2004). g Scottish Crime Survey; for 2004, the survey was renamed the Scottish Crime and Victimisation Survey. h Swiss crime survey, which was used as a basis for the International Crime Victimization Survey; see Killias et al. (2004). i Crime and Victimization component of Quarterly National Household Survey; see Central Statistics Ofï¬ce (2007). j Calls from Census Bureau CATI centers to be eliminated from NCVS in 2007. NOTES: RDD, random digit dialing. CATI, computer-assisted telephone interviewing. SOURCE: Adapted from Lynch (2006:Table 2) and Farrington et al. (2004). SURVEYING VICTIMS
APPENDIX E 179 In this appendix, we provide additional detail on selected international victimization surveys that are particularly relevant to our discussion of NCVS design features in the main body of the report. We describe the British Crime Survey and the International Crime Victimization Survey in particular. We also provide a fuller description of subnational victimization surveys that have been conducted in the United States. (One long-standing source of some crime victimization information at the state levelâthe Texas Crime Pollâis not described here, but is summarized in Box 4-2.) Eâ1 BRITISH CRIME SURVEY The British Crime Survey (BCS) measures criminal victimization among the population age 16 and older in England and Wales; Scotland was in- cluded in the earliest versions of the survey, but it now conducts its own victimization survey (as does Northern Ireland). The BCS became an annual data collection in 2001, having previously been conducted on a roughly bi- ennial basis (1982, 1984, 1988, 1992, 1994, 1996, 1998, and 2000). The BCS was originally conceived as âa research toolâ designed to âobtain a bet- ter count of crime,â âidentify risk factors in victimization,â and âexamine peopleâs worry about crime and their perceptions of and contact with the police.â Only with the passage of time did the goal of âprovid[ing] more reliable information about trends in crimeâ become a principal focus of the survey (Jansson, 2007:4). The BCS is administered by the Home Ofï¬ce of the United Kingdom, the duties of which correspondâin partâto those of the U.S. Department of Justice. Unlike the NCVS, for which the Census Bureau is the data col- lection agent, the United Kingdomâs principal statistical agency and data collectorâthe Ofï¬ce for National Statisticsâplays no role in the conduct of the BCS. (However, the placement of the BCS between the Home Ofï¬ce and the Ofï¬ce for National Statistics has been debated in reviews of the British governmentâs crime statistics programs, discussed in Section Eâ1.c.) An ex- ternal research organization, BMRB Social Research, has been engaged as the data collection agent for the BCS since 2001. However, the contract to conduct the BCS is retendered every three years (Walker, 2006:3â4). Owing to its annual nature, the BCS employs a 12-month reference pe- riod; interviews are conducted continuously throughout the year, so that 1-year window shifts depending on the interview date. The BCS target pop- ulation consists of âhouseholds in England and Wales living in private res- idential accommodationâ and the âadults aged 16 and over living in such householdsâ; accordingly, the BCS does not attempt to interview institu- tional populations (Grant et al., 2007:Â§2.2).
180 SURVEYING VICTIMS Eâ1.a Sample Design The BCS uses the British Postcode Address File as its frame; âwhole post- code sectorsâ are the primary sampling units (PSUs) for the survey and are selected after stratifying by basic demographic variables and Police Force Area (PFA) (Grant et al., 2007:Â§2.4â2.6). The current design of the BCS includes a base sample as well as two specialized âboostâ components. As of 2004, the BCS base sample is designed to ensure representationâ through at least 1,000 interviewsâin each designated PFA in England and Wales. The Home Ofï¬ceâs decision to make the BCS an annual survey be- ginning in 2001 was accompanied by a doubling of sample size, since the generation of BCS estimates at the PFA level was also taken as a goal for the survey (Smith, 2006:3). Hence, for 2005â2006, the total BCS base sample size was approximately 47,000 (Grant et al., 2007). Sampling targets are still constructed so that the larger jurisdictions are allocated higher numbers of interviewsâe.g., the âMetropolitanâ PFA consisting of the Metropolitan (London) Police and the City of London Police was targeted for about 3,500 interviews in 2005â2006. To promote some continuity, half of the PSUs used in one yearâs sample (e.g., 2004â2005) are retained for use in the next yearâs sample (2005â2006), although fresh addresses are selected from those PSUs (and lists are checked so that no address is selected two years in a row). Over time, the BCS response rate has ranged from 73 to 83 percent; it has been at about 75 percent since 2001 (Jansson, 2007:5). Eâ1.b Supplements in the BCS From 2003 to 2006, the Home Ofï¬ce conducted a conceptual comple- ment to the self-response victimization survey of the BCS: the Offending, Crime and Justice Survey (OCJS), which is a national self-report survey of offending behavior. (The survey also covers other antisocial behaviors, such as drug and alcohol use; questions on perceptions of antisocial behavior had earlier been ï¬elded as a module in the 1992 survey.) The OCJS is particu- larly oriented at measuring juvenile delinquency and so relaxes the BCS age constraint, collecting information from respondents as young as 10 years old and oversampling persons ages 10â25 so that they represent roughly half of the basic sample. The OCJS is designed as a longitudinal study, with multi- ple contacts of the same people, in order to permit measures of trajectories of violence within the study period. The size of the core sample beginning in 2003 was just over 10,000 people; by 2006, about 4,100 of the respondents had been contacted in previous waves of the survey, and a fresh sample brought the total sample size to about 5,000. The OCJS featured multi- ple response modes within the same interview: standard computer-assisted personal interviewing (CAPI) was used for most questions, but computer-
APPENDIX E 181 assisted self-interviewing (CASI)âin which respondents read questions from a laptop computer screen and answered them directlyâwas used for more sensitive topics. Audio-CASI, in which respondents could hear the questions through headphones, was used for some respondents with language difï¬cul- ties. Other modules or supplements that have been added to the BCS over time include (Jansson, 2007): â¢ Perceptions of and conï¬dence in the criminal justice system, including judges and the probation service (conducted regularly since 1996); â¢ Interpersonal violence, using CASI methods to try to promote fuller reporting of sensitive incident types, such as domestic violence, sex- ual victimization, and stalking (ï¬rst conducted in 1994 and regularly thereafter); and â¢ Separate modules of questions on mobile phone theft (ï¬rst in 2001), fraud and technology crimes (ï¬rst in 2002), and identify theft (ï¬rst in 2005). Eâ1.c Reviews of British Crime Statistics As part of a larger review of ofï¬cial statistics collected in the United Kingdom and their effectiveness in meeting the needs of users, a Statistics Commission (2006) was established and issued a ï¬nal report on crime statis- tics in July 2006. Separately, the Home Secretary tasked an independent review board headed by Smith (2006:1) as follows: The Home Secretary is concerned that public trust in the crime statistics produced by the Home Ofï¬ce has declined to such an extent that it is no longer possible to have a debate about alternative criminal justice policies on the basis of agreed facts about the trends in crime. He wishes to be advised on what changes could be made to the production and release of crime statistics so that public trust is re-established. In addition, he wants the Review Group to examine the key issues raised by the Statistics Commission about crime statistics and to make practical recommendations to the Home Secretary as to what changes are needed to address those issues. . . . The Smith (2006) review was published in November 2006. In their focus on user needs, the basic tasks of these two review efforts in the United Kingdom are similar to our panelâs task, although their mandates are considerably broader. The conduct of the program for ofï¬cial reports to police was in scope for both studies (while administration of the Uni- form Crime Reporting program is not part of ours), let alone the Statistics Commissionâs broader task of reviewing data collections on other social and
182 SURVEYING VICTIMS Box E-1 Recommendations of the United Kingdom Statistics Commission (2006) 1. Responsibility for the compilation and publication of crime statistics should be located at armâs length from Home Ofï¬ce policy functions and with clear accountability within the evolving framework of the government statistical service. 2. Treasury and Home Ofï¬ce Ministers should consider together a fully developed business case for moving responsibility for the British Crime Survey to the Ofï¬ce for National Statistics and should publish their agreed view with supporting arguments. 3. The Home Ofï¬ce, and others as appropriate, should make changes to the presentation of the recorded crime ï¬gures in order to communicate better the main messages. These steps include: â¢ changing the deï¬nition of violent crime; â¢ greater distinction between British Crime Survey results and police recorded crime data and the uses for which each source is appropriate; â¢ ensuring regular reviews of statistical classiï¬cations. 4. Existing local data should be better used to improve the quality and range of statistics on crime. This could be achieved through police forces agreeing to publish, in a co-ordinated way, standardised comparable analyses at a local level. These analyses need not necessarily be drawn together and published as ofï¬cial statistics by the Home Ofï¬ce but must be consistent with those that are. 5. Comparability of crime statistics between the various countries within the UK should be improved, identifying and addressing areas of statistics where there are problems. 6. Technical research should be carried out (to a published timetable) to develop a set of weighted index measures of âtotal crimeâ and promote debate on which, if any, of these measures should be adopted alongside the current basic count. SOURCE: Excerpted from Statistics Commission (2006). demographic characteristics. For reference, the six formal recommendations of the Statistics Commission are listed in Box E-1, and selected recommen- dations (those most relevant to the BCS and the topics in this report) of the Smith commission are listed in Box E-2. The Statistics Commission (2006:7) expressed particular concern âthat the broad statistical messages about crimeâ from both the BCS and the of- ï¬cial police report data âwere being lost against a backdrop of confused reporting.â Hence, its Recommendation 3 stresses the need for statistical communications to be clear about the nature and limitations of their data sources. The Smith independent review noted the value of complementary information provided by the BCS and ofï¬cial police reports, recommending that results from the two series continue to be published together (2.7) and that main messages from both series (and others, as appropriate) be explored
APPENDIX E 183 Box E-2 Selected Recommendations of the Smith (2006) Independent Review of British Crime Statistics 2.1 The British Crime Survey sample frame should be extended to include those under 16 and those living in group residences as soon as practical after taking the advice of those with relevant expertise and piloting the changes. In addition, research should be carried out on the victimisation of homeless and institutionalised populations. 2.2 We recommend that the Home Ofï¬ce should carry out a survey of commercial and industrial victimisation every two years. 2.3 We recommend that the Home Ofï¬ce should publish within 12 months an action plan for what it proposes to do to measure those crimes which are either not included in the present crime statistics or are poorly measured by them. 2.4 We recommend that the Home Ofï¬ce set up a standing panel of independent experts to provide regular review of and comment on methodological and analytic issues relating to the BCS and its other crime surveys. 2.7 The Home Ofï¬ce should continue to publish police recorded crime data and the BCS together. 2.8 We recommend that national crime statistics should be published annually and include a full commentary on the state of crime, drawing on all appropriate data sources. 2.10 We recommend that whenever Home Ofï¬ce statistical reports include interpretation or assumptions on the part of the authors these should be ï¬agged frankly and openly on their ï¬rst appearance in the report and the basis of those judgements should be referenced and made available. 2.11 We recommend that the Home Ofï¬ce should attach to each of its statistical series a statement clearly identifying the strengths and weaknesses of the particular series and the aspects about which professional judgements may need to be made. 2.12 In order to build trust, the Home Ofï¬ce should ensure that the release and statistical commentary on national crime statistics are quite clearly separated from political judgements or ministerial comments and should ensure the accuracy of any statements made about the statistics, whether in press releases or ministerial comments. 2.13 We recommend that the Home Ofï¬ce redeï¬ne violent crime in crime statistics to only include those crimes which actually cause physical injury or where the threat to inï¬ict such injury is likely to frighten a reasonable person. 3.1 The Home Ofï¬ce should make the provision of local crime information a central part of its crime communication strategy and not just rely on publishing national crime statistics. 4.1 We recommend that the Home Secretary should put in place a regulatory environment which ensures that there is an actual and perceived separation between those who produce statistical data and commentary on crime (a âBack Ofï¬ceâ function) and those who are responsible for policy advice and will be judged on the basis of the data (the âFront Ofï¬ceâ) be they in a police force,the Home Ofï¬ce or elsewhere. SOURCE: Excerpted from Smith (2006).
184 SURVEYING VICTIMS by analysts (2.8), while taking care not to attribute ï¬ndings or conclusions to the government or the Home Ofï¬ce generally (2.10). Several of the commissionâs recommendations are driven by a concern about crime statistics being issued by the program agency responsible for developing policy on crime. That is, the commission â[did] not believe trust [in crime statistics] can be built up whilst the same Ministers, advisers and senior ofï¬cials are directly involved both in publishing the ï¬gures and in setting out the Governmentâs positionâ (Statistics Commission, 2006:12). The Smith (2006:2) review summarized the basic problem: Every Home Secretary [has] accepted that a major purpose of Home Ofï¬ce policy is to reduce crime and for the present government this has meant setting performance targets for crime reduction. As a result, crime statistics have become a key metric for judging the performance of the Home Ofï¬ce and therefore central to debates between government and opposition. This has meant that crime statistics have been subject to a quite new degree of scrutiny and their release and handling have become politically much more sensitive. Hence, the commissionâs Recommendation 1 emphasizes the need for an armâs length distance between the Home Ofï¬ceâs statistical operations and its policy operations. For the BCS, in particular, the commissionâs Rec- ommendation 2 suggested a way for a more-than-armâs-length separation: transferring authority for the BCS from the Home Ofï¬ce to the Ofï¬ce for National Statistics (ONS), particularly if efforts to provide ONS greater in- dependence as a nonministerial department came to fruition.1 The Smith independent review reiterated the need for a clear divide between statisti- cal releases and policy decisions (Recommendation 2.12) but disagreed on the administrative placement of the BCS. âWe believe [the BCS] should re- main in the Home Ofï¬ce because as well as being a source for the national crime statistics, it is one of the most important research tools and sources of information for the Home Ofï¬ce to manage the crime problemâ (Smith, 2006:6). The Smith review argued for expanding BCS coverage to persons under age 16 as well as to people in group housing and, possibly, institutions (Rec- ommendation 2.1). Smith (2006:10) recognized that these changes âwould be methodologically difï¬cultâ and would require careful development and piloting. The interviewing of children, in particular, raises parental consent issues that would take great care; the review text takes the more nuanced position that âinterviews should be extended as far below 16 as proves prac- 1 âAlthough we see the case for transferring responsibility as strong, the Commission does not have available to it all the relevant information on costs and capacity to make a ï¬rm recommendationââhence the recommendationâs call for a âbusiness caseâ for transferring au- thority for the BCS (Statistics Commission, 2006:13).
APPENDIX E 185 tical in a regular household-based survey.â Echoing the commercial victim- ization surveys that were originally part of the U.S. National Crime Surveyâ but dropped on the recommendation of the National Research Council (1976b)âthe Smith review recommended that consideration be given to a biennial standalone study of commercial and industrial victimization (2.2). Both the Statistical Commission and the Smith review observed the âsub- stantial demand from local delivery organisations for more and better local level information on crimeâ (Statistics Commission, 2006:15). Eâ2 INTERNATIONAL CRIME VICTIMIZATION SURVEY Administered by the United Nations Interregional Crime and Justice Re- search Institute (UNICRI), the International Crime Victimization Survey (ICVS) is a set of surveys that aspires to provide standardized measures of victimization for cross-national comparison. A ï¬rst round of the ICVS was ï¬elded in 1989, after two years of development by a working group; sub- sequent rounds were ï¬elded in 1992, 1996â1997, and 2000. The survey began with about 15 countries (and 2 separate cities), while the 1996â1997 round was said to interview 135,465 people in 56 countries. The ICVS is conducted through computer-assisted telephone interview- ing (CATI) supplemented with personal interviewing; the face-to-face per- sonal interviews are typically restricted to a sample of people in a partici- pant nationâs capital city.2 A survey ï¬rm from the Netherlands, Interview, coordinated the work in most of the participating industrialized countries, subcontracting with ï¬rms or companies in those countries for sample selec- tion and ï¬eldwork. ICVS participants bear the costs of ï¬eldwork in their countries; they use a core set of questions in their interviewsâpursuant to the goal of standardizationâbut have some ï¬exibility for adapting the sam- ple or the survey instrument based on their own needs. For instance, in Australia, the Australian Institute of Criminology oversaw the 7,000 ICVS interviews conducted in that country in the 2004 wave of the survey. The institute customized the ICVS to attend to matters of interest to the Aus- tralian government by making 1,000 of the interviews a âbooster sampleâ of migrants from Vietnam and the Middle East, as well as by adding groups of questions on such issues as licensing and storage of ï¬rearms and perceptions of safety while using public transportation. They also dropped questions on sexual assault, judging that the instituteâs separate Violence Against Women Survey provided more reliable results (Johnson, 2005). 2 Exceptionsâcases in which personal interviews are favored over CATIâinclude places in which telephone penetration was not deemed to be high, including Malta, Northern Ireland, and rural Spain. ICVS work in Japan was also done face-to-face (http://www.unicri.it/wwd/ analysis/icvs/methodology.php).
186 SURVEYING VICTIMS The ICVS covers three crimes against persons (assaults and threats, rob- bery, and personal theft) and six crimes against households (burglary, at- tempted burglary, motor vehicle theft, theft from motor vehicles, motorcy- cle theft, and bicycle theft). Due to the frequency of the survey, the ICVS uses a 5-year reference period, asking respondents to recall incidents within that range; however, it also generally asks about events that occurred within the last 12 months, so that 1-year estimates may also be produced. As described on the ICVS methodology web page,3 ICVS sample selec- tion typically includes 1,000â2,000 households in participant households, reached through random-digit dialing (RDD) methods. A randomly selected person from each household is chosen to complete the interview (and is not replaced if that person refuses to participate). Contacts continue until the desired number of interviews is completed. Overall, this CATI component had a 67 percent response rate in 11 industrialized countries in the 1996 ICVS round, with rates varying from 40 percent (in the United States) to 80 percent or greater. When face-to-face interviewing was used, procedures tended to be some- what more ad hoc. Effort was typically concentrated in the countryâs cap- ital city, with the intent of obtaining about 1,000 respondents. The ICVS methodology page indicates that the sampling for face-to-face interviews âwas generally hierarchical,â starting âwith identifying administrative areas within the city, followed by a step-by-step procedure aiming at identifying areas, streets, blocks, households and ï¬nally the household member aged over 16 whose birthday is next.â Eâ3 VICTIMIZATION SURVEYS AS PART OF A BROADER SOCIAL SURVEY: CANADA AND AUSTRALIA Some countries that do not have standalone surveys of victimization still gather related information through major supplements to other, more om- nibus surveys. Two examples are Canada and Australia. Canadaâs system for the measurement of crime and victimization is sim- ilar to that of the United States. Ofï¬cial counts of crimes reported to the police have been collected annually since 1962 by the Uniform Crime Re- porting Surveys (e.g. Gannon, 2006), while victimization measures are ob- tained as part of Statistics Canadaâs omnibus General Social Survey.4 Since 1988, a victimization component in the General Social Survey has been in- 3 See http://www.unicri.it/wwd/analysis/icvs/methodology.php. 4 Despite the âSurveysâ part of the name, the Canadian UCR is intended as a complete cen- sus of Canadian law enforcement agencies. As a further parallel to the U.S. model, the Canadian Uniform Crime Reporting Surveys include a component dubbed UCR2âgathering detailed incident-based informationâthat is similar to the developing American National Incident- Based Reporting System (NIBRS; see Section Dâ2). As of 2005, 127 Canadian police depart-
APPENDIX E 187 cluded on a quinquennial basis (however, the third round was conducted in 1999, not 1998). Starting with the 1999 administration, the survey was renamed the General Social SurveyâVictimization (GSS-V replacing General , Social SurveyâPersonal Risk). The GSS-V is strictly a telephone survey, conducted by RDD from three centralized CATI centers in Statistics Canada regional ofï¬ces. A Statistics Canada web page describing the surveyâs methodology notes that the RDD approach excludes persons in households without telephones (estimated as representing âless than 2% of the target populationâ of Canadians 15 years of age or older) and persons with only cellular telephone service (âagain, this group makes up a very small proportion of the population, less than 3%â).5 Consistent with the surveyâs frequency, the GSS-V asks respondents to recall incidents within the past ï¬ve years. Working with this long reference period can require repeated sets of questions, since circumstances may have changed within the time window. For instance, the ï¬rst set of questions related to physical or sexual abuse by a spouse or partner asks âwhether, in the past 5 years, your current spouse/partner has done any of the following to youâ (emphasis in original). A follow-up question asks whether such acts of violence have occurred more than one time; if so, respondents are asked how many times the abuse has taken place in 12 months. In either event, the speciï¬c month and year is sought for the most recent incident. Subsequently, another module of questions asks about incidents of abuse at the hands of oneâs previous spouse or partner. Like the NCVS, the GSS-V has included topical modules sponsored by other agencies: speciï¬cally, the Interdepartmental Working Group on Family Violence funded questions on domestic and elder abuse, and the Solicitor General Canada funded questions on public perceptions on imprisonment in the 1999 administration of the survey. However, both of these sponsored supplements were dropped from the 2004 GSS-V . The GSS-V sample was selected based on 27 strata, with major cities (census metropolitan areas) representing their own strata and partitioning nonmetropolitan areas into about 10 strata. Within each strata, respondents were contacted through RDD after eliminating ânon-working banksâ (tele- phone exchanges known not to work). When a household was contacted, basic demographic information on all household members was elicited; one household member age 16 or older was then randomly selected from this list to complete the interview. ments completed the UCR2 survey, ârepresent[ing] 62% of the national volume of reportedâ crimes (Gannon, 2006:14). 5 See http://www.statcan.ca/cgi-bin/imdb/p2SV.pl?Function=getSurvey&SDDS=4504&lang =en&db=IMDB&dbg=f&adm=8&dis=2; as of June 21, 2007, this page showed a âlast modiï¬edâ of October 27, 2005.
188 SURVEYING VICTIMS For the 2004 administration of the Canadian survey, the overall response rate was estimated as 75 percent. The Australia Crime and Safety Surveyâadministered by the Australian Bureau of Statisticsâis a periodic supplement to the omnibus Monthly Pop- ulation Survey. Speciï¬cally, it is part of the April Labour Force Survey, itself a large supplement to the Monthly Population Survey. Most recently, the Crime and Safety Survey was conducted between April and July 2005; it had previously been ï¬elded at the national level in 1975, 1983, 1993, 1998, and 2002 (Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2006). Eâ4 STATE AND LOCAL VICTIMIZATION SURVEYS Requests for proposals (RFPs) under the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) State Justice Statistics Program for Statistical Analysis Centers (SACs) in 2000 identiï¬ed local victimization surveys as a high priority. Speciï¬cally, the RFP indicated that âSACs receiving funds under this theme must agree to use the BJS developed Crime Victimization Survey software, which can be easily modiï¬ed to meet State/local priorities and requirementsâ (Alaska Justice Statistical Analysis Center, 2002:1). Eâ4.a Alaska The Alaska SACâthe Justice Center at the University of Alaska, Anchorageâsecured BJS funding in fall 2000 to conduct a localized ver- sion of the NCVS, with the intent of providing victimization estimates for the city of Anchorage. At the time of the original contract award, a planning group was to con- sider methods for conducting a victimization survey for rural Alaska; formal work in that direction does not appear to have occurred. More recently, the Alaska SAC has switched focus from a dedicated victimization survey to a general Alaska Community Survey. Eâ4.b Illinois In 2002, the Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority contracted with Bronner Group, LLC, to conduct its ï¬rst victimization survey. The sur- vey was sent by mail to about 7,500 residents; the sample was drawn by the Illinois secretary of stateâs ofï¬ce from its database of holders of driverâs licenses and state-issued identiï¬cation cards. Unlike Minnesotaâs victimiza- tion survey, described below, the sample was apparently ï¬ltered to include only persons age 18 or older. The survey methodology and results are doc- umented by Hiselman et al. (2005); of the initial sample, some 23 percent proved to be unreachable (e.g., the person had moved or was deceased). In
APPENDIX E 189 all, 1,602 completed questionnaires were received, for a response rate of 28 percent (Hiselman et al., 2005:v). Eâ4.c Maine The ï¬rst Maine Crime Victimization Survey was conducted in fall 2006 by the University of Southern Maineâs Muskie School of Public Service, which houses the stateâs SAC. A telephone questionnaire was administered to 803 adults (RDD until target sample size reached) between August and December 2006. The survey report (Rubin, 2007) indicates that the effort in Maine was modeled after Utahâs victimization survey (Haddon and Chris- tenson, 2005), described below. The Maine survey also adopted questions on identity theft from the 2004 NCVS. Eâ4.d Minnesota The Minnesota Crime Survey is one of the few state victimization surveys to be ï¬elded multiple times on a semiregular basis (1993, 1996, 1999, 2002, and 2005). This three-year cycle has allowed the content of the survey to evolve over time; for instance, the 2002 survey added a question about per- ceived fear of a terrorist attack as well as additional questions on domestic abuse (Minnesota Justice Statistics Center, 2003). Conducted by Minnesota Planning, the survey is conducted by mail using driverâs license (or state- issued identiï¬cation card) rolls as the sampling frame. Generally, the use of this frame means that the survey covers persons age 16 and older, since that is the legal age for obtaining a driverâs license; however, since identiï¬cation cards can be issued to persons of any age, it is possible for someone under 16 to be selected for the survey. The Minnesota survey used an advance-notice postcard to alert sampled respondents that a questionnaire should soon arrive, and a reminder post- card was issued if no response was received within three weeks. Survey col- lection ended after ï¬ve weeks. In 2002, the survey obtained a 41.6 percent response rate on a mailout of 10,013 questionnaires. Eâ4.e Utah Utahâs BJS-afï¬liated SAC is the Research and Data Unit of the state Com- mission on Criminal and Juvenile Justice, in the ofï¬ce of the governor. In 2005, the Utah SAC conducted its third Utah Crime Victimization Survey; it used a 12-month reference period, so that respondents were asked to report crimes that occurred in calendar year 2004. However, the 2005 version of the survey also added a âlifetime victimizationâ question to each of the spe- ciï¬c crime types covered by the survey. The 2005 survey also expanded a battery of questions about attitudes and perceptions of crime (e.g., âWhen
190 SURVEYING VICTIMS you leave your home, how often do you think about it being broken into or vandalized?â). Unlike its predecessorsâcovering crimes in 2000 and 2002âthe 2005 administration of the Utah victimization survey was the ï¬rst to be conducted by telephone. Households were reached by RDD, with calls made until a target sample size was achieved. The 2005 administration of the survey included 2,002 interviews and found that 41.3 percent of the respondents had been a victim of one of the crimes covered by the survey in 2004, a slight increase from 2002âs estimate of 36.6 percent (Haddon and Christenson, 2005:4). The Utah SAC conducted a separate studyâfocused on women age 18 and olderâspeciï¬c to rape and sexual violence. Comparing this survey to the state victimization survey, Haddon and Christenson (2005:18â19) note that the separate studyâs ï¬ndings about the likelihood of a respondentâs having been raped sometime during her lifetime were ânot unlike those of the 2004 victimization surveyâ; however, the standalone survey suggested a much lower level of reporting to the police. They conclude that the lower reporting total âis likely more accurate in that [the rape survey] included a much larger group of individuals who had been sexually victimized.â Eâ4.f Wyoming With support from BJS, the Wyoming Statistical Analysis Center (2004) and the Wyoming Division of Victim Services ï¬elded a victimization survey in October 2003. The survey was conducted by random-digit dialing with an extension list stratiï¬ed by county with selection probability proportional to population size. The survey yielded 1,439 interviews. Anticipating a relatively low victimization rate, the survey was structured so that interviews did not simply end if a respondent indicated no incidents in the screener questions. Instead, those respondents were routed through a set of questions on attitudes toward criminal justice and awareness of the Division of Victim Services, and those respondents who did experience vic- timizations were guided through the analog of the NCVS incident form.