OAKLAND, Calif. (KGO) -- As Alameda County District Attorney Pamela Price closes out her first year in office, she wants the public to have a better understanding of what her office has done to help victims of crime.
"What I want the public to know is that the Alameda County District Attorney's office, under my administration, is fully and completely committed to servicing victims of crime," Price says.
Price says after taking office, she conducted a full audit of victim services by interviewing every member of that division.
As she describes, the audit uncovered a department that was understaffed and under-resourced, with unpaid bills and a backlog of services -- all of which meant victims weren't get help.
"We have also cleared the backlog, meaning that we processed 792 bills and 408 applications," said Kristina Molina, executive director of the Victim-Witness Services Division.
Price says she has initiated programs to assist survivors of human trafficking, more advocacy around helping children and created the first-ever Victims Advisory Commission to the D.A.'s office, which will provide a level of public accountability.
"And think about how can we continue to build an even more robust and equitable service delivery structure for people harmed in the county," said Cynthia Chandler, senior assistant district attorney.
As the recall campaign against Price builds, those involved argue that instituting new programs doesn't guarantee the programs will be successful. And their bigger concern still remains around criminal prosecution.
"They are in a grave. So they don't get an opportunity to have a second chance at life. They don't get an opportunity to come back and get a job. They don't have an opportunity for any of that, but there is never any talk about these victims and I believe that is very unfair," said Brenda Grisham with SAFE, or Save Alameda For Everyone, the group leading the recall. She spoke to ABC7 News at D.A. forum on Saturday.
Yet, Price is pushing back on those accusations and says her initiatives attest to the work her office is doing.
"Our responsibility is to provide trauma-informed support to every family. And we do that as best we can," Price said.
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