Inside the Office > Crime Victim Services Division

Crime Victim Services Training, Provider Certification and Statistical Analysis

What does CVST do?

SECTION 16-3-1410

(A) The Department of Crime Victim Services Training, Provider Certification, and Statistical Analysis is created within the Office of the Attorney General, South Carolina Crime Victim Services Division. The Director of the Crime Victim Services Division shall appoint a deputy director of the department.

(B) The Department of Crime Victim Services Training, Provider Certification, and Statistical Analysis shall:

(1) provide oversight of training, education, and certification of victim assistance programs;

(2) in cooperation with the Victim Services Coordinating Council, promulgate training standards and requirements;

(3) approve training curricula for credit hours toward certification;

(4) provide victim service provider certification;

(5) maintain records of certified victim service providers; and

(6) collect and analyze statistical data gathered from providers; grant providers; grant recipients; all victim services funding streams; and local, state, and federal crime data and publish analysis, needs assessments, and reports.

 

Who is a Victim Service Provider (VSP)?

SECTION 16-3-1420

(1)”Victim service provider” means a person:

(a) who is employed by a local government or state agency and whose job duties involve providing victim assistance as mandated by South Carolina law; or

(b) whose job duties involve providing direct services to victims and who is employed by an organization that is incorporated in South Carolina, holds a certificate of authority in South Carolina, or is registered as a charitable organization in South Carolina, and the organization’s mission is victim assistance or advocacy and the organization is privately funded or receives funds from federal, state, or local governments to provide services to victims.

“Victim service provider” does not include a municipal court judge, magistrates court judge, circuit court judge, special circuit court judge, or family court judge.

(2) “Witness” means a person who has been or is expected to be summoned to testify for the prosecution or who by reason of having relevant information is subject to call or likely to be called as a witness for the prosecution, whether or not an action or proceeding is commenced.

 

What is the responsibility of employers?

SECTION 16-3-1410 (C)

(C) Public crime victim assistance programs shall ensure that all victim service providers employed in their respective offices are certified through the department.

(1) Private, nonprofit programs shall ensure that all crime victim service providers in these nonprofit programs are certified by a Victim Services Coordinating Council-approved certification program. Victim Services Coordinating Council approval must include review of the program to ensure that requirements are commensurate with the certification requirements for public victim assistance service providers.

(2) Crime victim service providers, serving in public or private nonprofit programs and employed on the effective date of this article, are exempt from basic certification requirements but must meet annual continuing education requirements to maintain certification. Crime victim service providers, serving in public or private nonprofit programs and employed after the effective date of this article, are required to complete the basic certification requirements within one year from the date of employment and to meet annual continuing education requirements to maintain certification throughout their employment.

(3) The mandatory minimum certification requirements, as promulgated by the deputy director, may not exceed fifteen hours, and the mandatory minimum requirements for continuing advocacy education, as promulgated by the deputy director, may not exceed twelve hours.

(4) Nothing in this section shall prevent an entity from requiring, or an individual from seeking, additional certification credits beyond the basic required hours.

Contact Us

Kim Hamm, MSW Deputy Director

Fabienne Bolet, Administrative Coordinator 

E-mail: cvst@scag.gov

Phone: 803-734-0925

Mailing Address
1205 Pendleton Street, 4th floor
Columbia, SC 29201

Hours: 8:30 am – 5:00 pm, Monday – Friday

Frequently Used Forms

Victim Service Provider (VSP) Application*
To be completed by new victim service providers, as defined by §16-3-1420. The VSP application is for initial registration with CVST to receive a VSP number and should be completed prior to attending any trainings. Completion of an accredited VSP 15-hour basic core training course is the only way to become a certified Victim Service Provider.

Accreditation Application
To be completed by the sponsor of training and/or conference at least 30 days prior to the start of the training.

Non-Accredited Certification Request
To be completed by a certified VSP seeking continuing education credit for training not approved in advance by CVST. Requests must be submitted within 30 days after the training concluded.

Approved Trainings

Victim Service Providers (VSPs), as defined by §16-3-1420, must complete an approved 15-hour basic core training within one year of their date of employment in order to become a certified Victim Service Provider.

Certified VSPs are required to complete 12 hours of approved continuing education each calendar year to maintain certification and remain in compliance.

The following trainings have been approved by CVST for VSP credit. It is the VSP’s responsibility to register for approved trainings. VSPs must sign designated sign-out sheets with assigned VSP number in order to receive credit.

List of approved training opportunities

Accreditation Standards

The following standards will be considered by the Department of Crime Victim Services Training, Provider Certification and Statistical Analysis (CVST) in granting, denying, or withdrawal of accreditation of sponsors, programs, or parts of programs:

  1. Courses must have significant or practical content;
  2.  Subject matter must deal primarily with the theory, practice or ethics of victim rights or services;
  3.  Courses must be directed to and intended for an audience of Victim Service Providers (VSPs);
  4.  Presenter/Trainer must be qualified by practical or academic experience to teach the subject; this experience should be demonstrated in the bio;
  5.  High quality written materials (e.g., handouts) must be distributed to or available to participants;
  6.  Suitable classroom or laboratory setting must be provided for participants;
  7.  Audio-visual or media presentations are acceptable as follows:
    •  A presenter/trainer is in attendance or available by telephone hook-up to comment and answer questions; or
    •  Other appropriate mechanisms, as determined by CVST, are present to enable the attendee to participate or react with the presenters and other attendees. Appropriate mechanisms include quizzes or examinations, response tracking, user prompts, and instant messaging.
  8. Completed CVST authorized attendance sign-out sheets shall be submitted to CVST within 30 days of the course/program.

In extending accreditation for VSP trainings, CVST reserves the right to have a representative attend all programs without charge to CVST and/or its representative and requires adherence to its accreditation standards.

Training Requirements

Updates to Basic Core VSP training topics:

  • Training requirements and hourly breakdowns have been amended and revised.

Essential/Mandatory Criteria set for Basic Core VSP Training:

  • Each topic will have core criteria that must be included in the Basic VSP training, regardless of which agency is providing the training.
  • These criteria are the minimum standards that ALL victim service providers should know upon completion of Basic VSP training.

Clarification on volunteer VSP training requirements:

  • VSP certification is recommended, but not required, for volunteers who provide direct services to crime victims. All volunteers should adhere to their agency’s training policies and procedures.

Promulgation of training standards:

  • All VSPs must obtain a minimum of 15 hours in approved Basic Core for VSPs in year 1 of employment and a minimum of 12 hours of approved VSP continuing education each subsequent calendar year for VSPs.
  • All Notifiers/support staff must obtain 2 hours of specialized training for Notifiers every other year.

VSP 2.0

Basic Core Training Requirements *

  • SC Victims’ Rights and Statutes -2 hours
  • Crime Victim Compensation - 1 hour
  • Ethics - 1 hour
  • Criminal Justice System/Court Procedures - 2 hours
  • Communication - 2 hours
  • Multidisciplinary Collaboration - 2 hours
  • Self-Care - 1 hour
  • Specialized Training - 4 hours

15 HOURS TOTAL

*Effective January 2019*

The training areas listed above have specific content that must be covered in order to receive credit.

Please view our VSP 2.0 Field Guide for additional information.

Notifiers/Support Staff Requirements:

Summary Court and Detention Center employees who have been identified by their supervisor as crime victim notifiers are considered Notifiers/Support Staff. Notifiers/Support Staff must complete the 2 hour Notifiers/Support Staff training track every other calendar year.

Notifiers/Support Staff Training Track

1st hour

Review of Victim’s Bill of Rights (Section 24)

2nd hour

Review of Article 15 (Detention Centers) & (Law Enforcement) & Summary of Act 141 & 343 Law Enforcement (Section 14-1-211) &

(Section 16-3-1520, 1525-notwithstanding the provisions of Section 22-5-510), Section 16-3-1530, 1535, 1540, 1545, 1550, 1560)