Help Seeking Among Victims of Crime: A Review of the Empirical Literature
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AbstractThis paper reviews the literature on help-seeking behavior among adult victims of crime. Specifically, the paper summarizes prevalence rates for formal and informal help seeking and reviews predictors of and barriers to service use following victimization. Research suggests that only a small fraction of crime victims seek help from formal support networks; however, many seek support from informal sources. Several variables are associated with increased likelihood of formal help seeking, although the manner in which these variables affect reporting behavior is not clear. From this review, it is concluded that much remains to be learned regarding patterns of help seeking among victims of crime. Gaps in the literature and directions for future research are discussed.