VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwired - April 15, 2014) - Public Safety Canada
Today, the Honourable Steven Blaney, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, and the Honourable Alice Wong, Minister of State (Seniors), met with victims of crime stakeholders to discuss recently announced legislation to create a Canadian Victims Bill of Rights that would transform the criminal justice system by creating, at the federal level, clear rights for victims of crime.
- The Victims Bill of Rights Act would create the following statutory rights for victims of crime:
Right to information: Victims would have the right to general information about the criminal justice system and available victim services and programs, and specific information about the progress of the case, including information relating to the investigation, prosecution, sentencing and conditional release of the person who harmed them.
Right to protection: Victims would have the right to have their security and privacy considered at all stages of the criminal justice process, to have reasonable and necessary measures to protect them from intimidation and retaliation, and to request their identity be protected from public disclosure.
Right to participation: Victims would have a right to convey their views about decisions to be made by criminal justice professionals and have them considered at various stages of the criminal justice process, and to present a victim impact statement.
Right to restitution: Victims would have the right to have the court consider making a restitution order for all offences for which there are easy-to-calculate financial losses.
- By introducing legislation to create a Canadian Victims Bill of Rights, the Federal Government is delivering on a commitment from the 2013 Speech from the Throne that was reinforced in Budget 2014. The legislation is also in line with the Government's Plan for Safe Streets and Communities, which focuses on holding violent offenders accountable, enhancing the rights of victims, and increasing the efficiency of our criminal justice system.
- The National Office for Victims (NOV) at Public Safety Canada is a central resource that offers information and referrals to victims of crime. NOV also provides input into federal policy and legislative initiatives, develops and distributes information products for victims and members of the criminal justice system, and supports the Correctional Service of Canada and the Parole Board of Canada in delivering services to victims of crime.
"The Victims Bill of Rights Act, recently introduced by our Government, will provide victims with legislated rights in the criminal justice system - this includes rights to information, protection, participation, and restitution. We have taken action to introduce reforms giving victims a more effective voice in the criminal justice system, and we will continue to ensure victims receive the courtesy, compassion and respect that they so rightfully deserve."
- Steven Blaney, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness
"By introducing the Canadian Victims Bill of Rights, our Government has shown leadership in standing up for victims of crime. This is especially important for those most vulnerable in society, such as seniors, who are often subject to different forms of elder abuse. The Canadian Victims Bill of Rights gives seniors the tools to be treated with dignity and respect by the legal system they depend on to defend them."
- Alice Wong, Minister of State (Seniors)
- Backgrounder: Overview of the Canadian Victims Bill of Rights
- Backgrounder: Right to information
- Backgrounder: Right to protection
- Backgrounder: Right to participation
- Backgrounder: Right to restitution
- Backgrounder: Victim Surcharge
- National Victims of Crime Awareness Week
- Public Safety Canada - National Office for Victims
- News release: Victims Week Federal Symposium
- News release: Introduction of Canadian Victims Bill of Rights
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For more information, please visit the website www.publicsafety.gc.ca.