Southeast Texas Region 2015 Scope of Problem

Immigrants & Refugees do not report for fear the police.  In their homelands, Police & Criminals routinely collude in victim retaliation in their homelands. 

Immigrants & Refugees account for 

  • -  25% of population

-  33% of business ownership
-  40 to 50 native languages
- 100+ spoken dialects

Challenge for Law Enforcement:
- Language Barriers
- Cultural & Trust Barriers

All the Language Access translation of crime victim information can only motivate reporting, if information is DELIVERED to these high-risk communities.

The Good News:  

Houston Language Bank deigns proven Communications Solutions.



CVNR: Low-Risk Crime Targets for Perpetrators

Habitual criminals are well-aware of the LEP communities that do not report crime.  Failure to report invites more crime and more brutal crime.  This cycle only intensifies the fear factor that drives CVNR.

Our metro region attracts more immigrants and resettles more refugees than most other US regions.  More recent arrivals tend to be most fearful of reporting crime. 

Our research with resettlement agencies here indicates a majority of their client base does not report crime.

The size of the CVNR population in the region will only grow going forward- as will the size of this growing crime problem.

The Good News:  

Immigrants and Refugees are taxpayers and job generators. Their substantial tax-base contribution supports delivery of vital public safety information.



No Stats, No Problem...?

When asked what crime statistics were for Crime Victims Not Reporting, Houston Police Dept. reps responded they have no data.  Without data, problems cannot be addressed, solutions cannot be planned.

What plans do our law enforcement have to protect these crime victims and identify these criminals?Repeated inquiries re CVNR go unanswered.  

The tendency is to shy away from inconvenient crime stats that may undermine the positive 'crime reduction' reports that make good headlines.

The tendency for public sector agencies, already under-resourced and over-tasked, to practice 'avoidance' when confronted with new challenges for which there are no routine solutions.

The Good News: There are real regional solutions for Crime Victims Not Reporting.


Recent Studies


"Victimization of Immigrants"
Glen Kercher, Director

"There is little published research on the victimization experiences of Hispanic and Asian immigrants to this country.  That which does exist often is based on impressions of police officers and district attorneys.  There are a few studies which look at a particular immigrant group, but little focus on one geographical area and the different ethnicities residing there..."


"Language & Population Demographics"
Jerry Wood, Glenda Joe

Regional & Greater Houston demographic research, based on US Census.

Raw population numbers may be conservative, given the variable of undercounts.

What stands out is the diversity of language groups and the distinct cultural base variations.

Communication solutions for LEP communities, large & small, is the focus of Houston Language Bank planning initiatives.


Comprehensive Planning
'Crime Reporting to Court Date

Reporting crime is just the first step in motivating victims to follow through in the court system.

Victim service providers, district attorney offices and law enforcement all need solution planning that works to protect LEP crime victims.

Community support networks for LEP crime victims need trusted relationship building with public sector agencies.

Houston Language Bank initiatives for Crime Victims Not Reporting breaks new ground in problem- solving through partnerships.

"Language Barriers Continue to Thwart Victims of Crime"
New York Times, May 11, 2014

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