Secondary Traumatic Stress, Vicarious Trauma, and Compassion Fatigue Among Victim Advocates
Hooft, Sierra 2016 Secondary Traumatic Stress, Vicarious Trauma, and Compassion Fatigue Among Victim Advocates.pdf
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Secondary Traumatic Stress (STS), Vicarious Trauma (VT), and Compassion Fatigue (CF) are conditions resulting from exposure to secondary trauma. Victim advocates provide support and information to victims after they have been victimized and work intensely with victim populations. Their work with trauma victims makes them susceptible to STS, VT, and CF. This quantitative study examines the prevalence and risk factors of STS, VT, and CF among victim advocates across the United States. A survey was emailed to victim advocates across the country to measure the conditions. Results indicated that the presence of support provided through an advocate’s work, such as trainings or peer support, raised levels of compassion satisfaction, and lower levels of burnout. The more support types provided also raised compassion satisfaction and lowered burnout. Hours worked and direct hours working with victims also had significant positive correlations with STS levels. The results from this study provide a better understanding of those that are affected by STS, VT, and CF, and helps guide prevention and intervention efforts for all advocates in the field.