Attorney General Launches Statewide “Did You Know?” Initiative

A statewide initiative is underway to help the state’s residents understand all of the resources available from the Office of the Attorney General, announced Attorney General Jim Hood today.
“We think people understand that we’re an agency of lawyers, that we prosecute various crimes, and that we bring lawsuits in the public interest,” said Attorney General Hood. “But we also want Mississippians to understand that we are so much more than that. For example, did you know that this office awarded more than $3 million in financial assistance to eligible victims of violent crimes last year? Most importantly, we have some great resources available to our residents.”
Here is an example of some of the information the Attorney General’s Office hopes to convey:
DID YOU KNOW . . .
. The Victim Compensation Division provides financial assistance and support services to eligible victims of violent crimes? The goal is to help relieve the hardships victims face by assisting in their recovery through financial assistance, victim services and information on crime victims’ Bill of Rights.
. The Consumer Protection Division can provide assistance to you if you have a dispute with a business through its mediation process? Also, if you have been the victim of identity theft, home repair fraud, or other consumer fraud the Consumer Protection Division can provide assistance to you on how to respond and combat these issues.
. The Cyber Crime Unit protects and in many cases rescues children through the investigation of computer crimes such as child pornography?
. The Administrative Division manages the Law Enforcement Officers and Fire Fighters Disability Trust Fund, which provides financial benefits to eligible law enforcement officers and fire fighters injured in the line of duty?
. The Domestic Violence Division can provide materials on coping with domestic abuse, including information on domestic abuse protective orders and the address confidentiality program?
. The Child Desertion Unit criminally prosecutes deadbeat parents throughout the state for desertion, abandonment and the failure to pay court ordered child support?
. The Medicaid Fraud Control Unit and the Vulnerable Adults Unit enforce the laws which prohibit abuse, neglect, and exploitation of vulnerable adults, such as those having mental or physical disabilities?

The initiative is grassroots in nature and will consist of employees from the Attorney General’s Office mailing or delivering packets of information to churches, community centers, non-profits, and the like.
“No money will be spent on media campaigns, and most of the materials being provided were printed in-house. But we do hope the media will help us get the word out to the public,” said General Hood. “Primarily, we plan to visit smaller, more rural communities and talk to our fellow Mississippians, but particularly the poor and busy working people. We want to get some of our publications into the communities so that Mississippians can know where to turn for specific types of assistance.”
Representatives from the Attorney General’s Office will visit select locations throughout the state during November and December. Cities already scheduled for appearances (open to the public) are:

Thursday, November 12, 2009
Riverview Nursing & Rehab, Greenwood–10:00am

Mississippi Care Center of Greenville, Greenville-1:00pm

Friday, November 13, 2009
Meridian High School,Meridian-11:00am

Monday, November 16, 2009
Hattiesburg Health and Rehab, Hattiesburg-10:00am

Monday, November 16, 2009
Comfort Care Nursing Center, Laurel-1:30pm

Tuesday, November 17, 2009
Boyington Health Care Facility, Gulfport-1:00pm

Tuesday, November 17, 2009
Moss Point High School, Moss Point -6-7:00 p.m.

Monday, November 30, 2009
Shady Lawn Nursing Home, Vicksburg-10:00am

Monday, November 30, 2009
Holmes County Bank, Lexington-2:00pm-4:00pm
10:00am

Tuesday, December 1, 2009
Tupelo Nursing and Rehab Center, Tupelo -10:00am

Tuesday, December 1, 2009
Tupelo Nursing and Rehab Center, Tupelo -2:00pm

Monday, December 7, 2009
Starkville Manor, Starkville-10:00am

Monday, December 7, 2009
Aurora Australis Lodge, Columbus -1:00pm

Wednesday, December 9, 2009
Adams County Nursing Center, Natchez -10:00am

Wednesday, December 9, 2009
Adams County Nursing Center, Natchez -10:00am

Thursday, December 10, 2009
Clarksdale Nursing Center, Clarksdale-Time TBA

Thursday, December 10, 2009
Golden Center Living Center, Batesville -1:30pm-2:30pm

Thursday, December 10, 2009
Golden Center Living Center, Batesville –1:30pm-2:30pm

Included in all of the materials is information on how to learn more about the particular areas of our office. Through this grassroots initiative, our office will use a toll free number (1-800-281-4418) for Mississippians to call for additional information. All of the information being distributed can also be found at www.agjimhood.com.
“As Attorney General, I love the work this office does to assist all Mississippians, rich and poor, particularly those who have been victims of crimes or need assistance to help with a difficult situation like domestic violence,” said General Hood. “Through this initiative, we hope to spread the word to Mississippians that we have resources available to help them.”

Hood Press
11/5/9