Kathi West


As Interviewed by Rachel F., March 7, 2013
"In the old days, they used to say this perpetrator doesn’t have any money at the time of the sentencing, so the judge won’t order any restitution. But what if they inherit it or win the lottery? Couldn’t touch it."
Kathi West

Introductory Profile: About Kathi West

Kathi West is a victim-witness coordinator for the federal government. She works with crime victims to preserve their rights, to provide information about their cases, and to offer support during a traumatic time. We discussed the progression of victims’ rights and beneficial laws that have been created. The topic of human trafficking stood out among the others, particularly regarding citizenship.

Ms. West is a woman of medium height, with blonde hair. Before becoming a victim coordinator, Ms. West worked as a social worker for several years. She then returned to school for a Master’s Degree in Social Work. Her time as a social worker allowed her to understand and sympathize with the fear and trauma victims often experienced. This allows her to bring a new perspective to a case. She has been involved in the Victims’ Rights Movement for over 20 years.

Ms. West was very enthusiastic about the Victims’ Rights movement and was personally kind to me. She seemed extremely knowledgeable about the topic, and she was able to provide me with specific cases to highlight laws.

Our main topic was the Victims’ Rights movement and specific cases involved in this struggle. She showed me cases in which more rights were necessary or in which certain rights played a large role. Overall, the interview had an aura of contemplativeness, yet excitement. The topics we discussed were serious, but Ms. West seemed glad to share them with me.

From this interview, I learned about a struggle for rights I had never heard of before this project. I had always assumed victims receive compensations and are entitled to extensive rights, so this reminded me not to take my own rights for granted. In conclusion, I found this interview interesting, both due to the subject matter and my interviewees enthusiasm.