Lieutenant Valerie Martinez, Supervisor
The Lafourche Parish Sheriff’s Office Police Social Services (PSS) Section is a victim services program like no other in the state of Louisiana which provides comprehensive services to crime victims as well as the elderly community. Founded in 1997, this unique program differs from most Victim Assistance programs in that crisis services are initiated immediately, on-scene for the victim when the victimization occurs and continues throughout the entire criminal justice process for as long as the victim requires help. PSS deputies also hold a special place in their hearts for members of our senior community. Deputies often stop by Senior Centers and nursing homes throughout the parish to visit with the elderly and ensure their needs are being met.
PSS has partnered with other social agencies to ensure victims’ needs are met: crisis/trauma counseling; emergency financial aid; transportation; accompaniment to court or hospital; shelter or safe house placement; personal advocacy during a criminal investigation and trial; assistance with protective orders and various legal matters; victim and death notification; child care during court; Critical Incident Stress Debriefing; and much more.
Call Police Social Services at (985) 449-4477 if…
- You have been threatened or intimidated by the suspect or the suspect’s companions and/or family.
- Your personal property is being held by the Sheriff’s Office and you need assistance in its return.
- You don’t know where to report a crime that you have witnessed.
- You have questions about what to expect in court or any other matter in regards to your case – no matter how unimportant you think it is.
- You need someone to speak to your employer on your behalf to allow your appearance as a witness in court.
- You move or change your telephone number.
- You just need someone to LISTEN
Here are some links to more information:
- LAVNS (Louisiana Automated Victim Notification System)
- Crime Victim Reparations
- Domestic Violence Unit
- Protective Orders
- P.A.C.T. Place Supervised Child Visitation & Monitored Child Exchange
- Community Watch Programs
- “Are You OK?” Program for the Elderly
- Preventing Elderly Abuse, Assault, and Theft
- Chaplaincy Program
- Identity Theft
- Holiday Safety Tips
Another important aspect of the PSS program is the provision of law enforcement training. Extensive training programs provided by PSS in the areas of death notification, victim rights, domestic violence, sexual assaults, and victims with disabilities have influenced attitudes, policies, and direct service provisions in these important areas. In one year alone, PSS trained over 350 law enforcement officers throughout the state of Louisiana. PSS has also made presentations at two National Sheriff’s Association conferences to educate other sheriffs on implementing a Police Social Services Section in their own agencies.
Our Police Social Services Section has been recognized by the U.S. Department of Justice Office for Victims of Crime for dedication and hard work on behalf of America’s crime victims and was the recipient of the Louisiana Attorney General’s Office Award for Program of Excellence. It is the gratitude received from the thousands of victims served by this program, however, that drives the PSS Section in its pursuit of victim assistance excellence.