HERS (Heath Evaluation & Referral Service) records
MSHERS98

 An inventory of its records at the University of Illinois at Chicago

Summary Information

Repository
Richard J. Daley Library Special Collections and University Archives
Creator
Health Evaluation & Referral Service.
Title
HERS (Health Evaluation & Referral Service) records
ID
MSHERS98
Date [inclusive]
1974-1990
Extent
2.75 Linear feet
Language
English
Abstract:
The bulk of the material in this collection pertains to Chicago-area victim/witness advocacy programs and sexual assault. HERS worked with several organizations to establish training programs designed to help hospital personnel in dealing effectively with victims of sexual assault. This collection also contains information on incest, child abuse and domestic violence, as well as material on parental stress and gang violence.

Preferred Citation

HERS (Health Evaluation & Referral Service) records, Special Collections and University Archives, University of Illinois at Chicago

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Administrative History of HERS

HERS (Health Evaluation & Referral Service) was a women's health consumer referral and advocacy organization. It was founded in 1973 to help women make informed health choices and to improve the quality of the services from which they can choose. The founders - activists in the women's health care and women's rights movements - wanted to ensure that all women, regardless of ability to pay, would have access to safe and effective health care choices. HERS evaluated health care providers for the quality and manner of care and initiated educational programs to provide women with information about their bodies and alternative health care choices. Their activism focused on support for women's health care options.

HERS' mission of greater women's health advocacy was achieved in two ways. The first was through its information and referral services, which directed individual women to health care providers that were sensitive to their concerns. Such services, along with the educational aspects of the HERS consumer feedback system, helped women become advocates for themselves and their families. The second way that HERS promoted greater health advocacy was by bringing together groups of health care workers and consumers in order to initiate reforms. These reforms led to a greater awareness of women's issues in the policies and conduct of health care institutions.

During its time, HERS grew from a collective of health care activists into a larger social service organization with an office and staff, a community-based board of directors, and an advisory board of health care professionals. Despite its growing size and influence, in 1989 HERS could not continue its operation due to financial constraints. Three of the solid foundation supporters cut their contributions. Two other foundations that had supported HERS failed to renew their contributions. Other promising sources of support, including the close personal contacts of two HERS board members, were not able to give monies. Also, the Spring Benefit and the Walkathon came in much lower than HERS' projections for these events. Combined, the above pushed HERS over the thin edge. At the end of 1989, HERS closed its doors, paying its debts until January of 1990.

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Scope and Contents

The bulk of the material in this collection pertains to Chicago-area victim/witness advocacy programs and sexual assault. HERS worked with several organizations to establish training programs designed to help hospital personnel in dealing effectively with victims of sexual assault. This collection also contains information on incest, child abuse and domestic violence, as well as material on parental stress and gang violence.

These materials are divided into four series: General Information on Sex Crimes, Legislation and Law Enforcement, Victims Assistance Organizations, and Health Evaluation and Referral Service (HERS). The first series is divided into three subseries including Sexual Assault, Domestic Violence, and Child Abuse/Incest. The third series is divided into four subseries including the Victim/Witness Advocacy Project, the Victim Witness Assistance Project, the Citizens Committee for Victim Assistance and Rape Victim Assistance and Prevention Program. Within each series and subseries, folders are organized chronologically. Material in this collection includes correspondence, statistics, meeting minutes, grant proposals, notes, newspaper clippings, fliers, handbooks, newsletters, financial reports, and bibliographies. These records, consisting of 2.75 linear feet of material, cover the time period of 1974-1990.

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Administrative Information

Publication Information

Richard J. Daley Library Special Collections and University Archives 2004-06-09

801 S. Morgan Street
Chicago, Illinois, 60607
312.996.2742

Revision Description

  07/16/2010

Restrictions on Access

Restrictions apply to several files in Series IV.

Restrictions on Use

Restricted files in Series IV cannot be photocopied.

Acquisition Information

The Health Evaluation & Referral Service Records were donated to the University of Illinois at Chicago, Special Collections, on January 8, 1998.

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Controlled Access Headings

Corporate Name(s)

  • Health Evaluation & Referral Service. -- Archives

Subject(s)

  • Midwest Women's History.
  • Rape victims -- Services for -- United States.
  • Women's health services -- United States.

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Collection Inventory

Series I: General Information on Sex Crimes 

Subseries A: Sexual Assault 

Box Folder

Jackson Park Hospital Rape Victim Advocate Program, undated 

1 1

Informational pamphlets on sexual assault, 1975-1977 

1 2

Newspaper clippings and coverage of the Pressman Trial, 1976-1981 

1 3

Newspaper clippings, 1980-1982 

1 4

Speech and worksheets on sexual assault, 1981 

1 5

Conference material for West Area Rape Network, 1981-1982 

1 6

Newspaper clippings, legislation and other media, 1981-1983 

1 7

Subseries B: Domestic Violence 

Box Folder

Ten issues of "Response" (newsletter on domestic violence), 1978-1980 

1 8

Events, newspaper clippings, legislation, and newsletters, 1980 

1 9

Two issues of "Women's Alliance" (newsletter on domestic violence), 1981 

1 10

Subseries C: Child Abuse/Incest 

Box Folder

Academic papers (restricted - no photocopying w/o author's permission), 1978-1980 

1 11

Articles, newspaper clippings, pamphlets and newsletters, 1978-1981 

1 12

Statistics, pamphlets, notes and other media, 1980-1982 

2 13

Programs and pamphlets for parents, 1981 

2 14

Proposal draft for a program on child abuse, pamphlets, and notes, 1981 

2 15

Child Sexual Assault Service Network (CSASN) material and newspaper clippings, 1984 

2 16

CSASN organizational information, correspondences, notes, etc., 1981-1986 

2 17

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Series II: Legislation and Law Enforcement 

Box Folder

Crime Victims Compensation and Law Enforcement Assistance, 1972-1980 

2 18

Two issues of "The Victim Advocate" (criminal justice publication), 1977-1979 

2 19

Statutes concerning Victims and Witnesses, and Rape Victim Counseling Centers, 1979 

2 20

Law Enforcement Commission notes and memoranda on funding, 1979-1980 

2 21

Legal and legislative documents concerning sexual assault victims, 1978-1982 

2 22

Legal documents and other material concerning crime prevention, 1979-1983 

2 23

Illinois Sexual Assault Act of 1983, 1983 

3 24

Women's Legal Rights Conference, 1983 

3 25

Community Gang Program material and House Bill 2379, 1983-1984 

3 26

Chicago Women's Political Caucus meeting agenda and newsletter, 1983-1984 

3 27

Sexual Assault - legal issues, 1978-1985 

3 28

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Series III: Victims Assistance Organizations 

Subseries A: Victims/Witness Advocacy Project 

Box Folder

Volunteer Advocate Manual, undated 

3 29

Grant applications, notes, memoranda, newspaper clippings, pamphlets, 1974-1981 

3 30

Grant application, 1977-1978 

3 31

Victim/Witness Advocacy Project Evaluation, 1977-1979 

3 32

Interagency Workshop on Rape, 1979 

4 33

Information on Rape Training, 1979 

4 34

Progress report, 1979-1981 

4 35

Information on Rape Training, 1981 

4 36

Subseries B: Victim Witness Assistance Project 

Box Folder

Victim Witness Assistance Project Operations Manual, 1977 

4 37

Grant award and resumes for assistant director position, 1979 

4 38

Newsletters, correspondences, worksheets, newspaper clippings, 1979-1980 

4 39

Subseries C: Citizens Committee for Victim Assistance 

Box Folder

Police Department documents, sexual assault statistics, pamphlets, 1975-1982 

4 40

Guidelines for the treatment of sexual assault victims, 1977-1981 

4 41

General information and sexual assault statistics, 1979-1980 

4 42

Booklets, correspondences, etc., 1979-1981 

4 43

Guidelines for the hospital treatment of sexual assault victims, 1980 

5 44

Correspondences, administrative documents, newspaper clippings, 1981 

5 45

Correspondences concerning CPD's film on sexual assault, 1981 

5 46

Subseries D: Rape Victim Assistance and Prevention Program 

Box Folder

Brochures, bumper stickers, guides, 1980 

5 47

General information, newsletters, booklets, 1980 

5 48

General information, newspaper clippings, 1980-1982 

5 49

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Series IV: Health Evaluation & Referral Service (HERS) 

Box Folder

Personal file of Saundra Bishop (RESTRICTED - no photocopying), 1981 

5 50

Organizational history, budgetary information, feminist position paper (RESTRICTED - no photocopying), brochures, meeting minutes, etc., 1985-1988 

5 51

Adolescent Women's Heath Network's Roundtable Conference Report, 1988 

5 52

Fund-raising information, grant proposals, meeting minutes, 1988-1989 

6 53

Budget paper, bylaws, grand proposals, 1987-1990 

6 54

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