Supporting Vulnerable Victims And Their Families
McGuinty Government Launches New Program To Help Victims In Court
Victims of crime and their families can get the additional support they need to participate more fully in the criminal court process.
The Vulnerable Victims and Family Fund will provide financial and court-based supports for both victims of crime and families of homicide victims. This will include:
- Helping to cover the cost of travel to attend key criminal court appearances
- Providing vulnerable victims with language interpretation services during the criminal trial
- Ensuring victims with disabilities have appropriate supports, such as real-time captioning or other equipment to help them testify.
This new program is part of the Open Ontario plan to make the justice system more accessible, effective and affordable to meet the needs of vulnerable victims of crime.
- The province will provide $900,000 over the next three years to victims of crime and families of homicide victims.
- These new services will be available through Ontario's Victim/Witness Assistance Program.
- This financial support will come from the Victims' Justice Fund collected through a provincial surcharge, which is applied to all fines under the Provincial Offences Act (except parking violations).
- Since 2003, the government has invested $320.4 million from the Victims' Justice Fund in supports and services to help thousands of victims of crime in regions across Ontario.
- April 10-16, 2011, is Victims of Crime Awareness Week.
“Going to court can be a stressful experience for victims of crime and their loved ones. With these new supports we are helping to ease the burden during these challenging times.”