Resources

Justice Canada hosted a Knowledge Exchange on the criminal justice system’s responses to sexual assault against adults on March 7-8, 2017.  The objective of the event was to better understand why, despite Canada’s robust criminal laws related to sexual assault, rates of reporting, prosecution, and conviction remain low. The event also explored  how the criminal justice system’s responses to sexual assault could be improved. The summary of this event is now available online. 

Canada’s criminal justice system is in urgent need of reform. Delays in criminal proceedings have become a significant problem as it takes too long for many criminal cases to reach a final disposition. Lengthy trials and multiple adjournments are particularly hard on victims and their families, as well as on accused persons, whose stress can be worsened as the time between the laying of charges and the end of the trial stretches out month after month. When these delays become very lengthy, courts may find that the accused’s constitutional right to a trial within a reasonable time (as guaranteed by section 11(b) of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms) has been breached. If this happens, the only judicial remedy available in Canada is an order for a stay of proceedings, which ends the process without a completed trial on the merits of the case.

A conference for policy makers, mental health, justice and social service professionals involved in the prevention, assessment, management, and safety planning for domestic violence and domestic homicide, particularly those working with Indigenous, rural, remote, northern, immigrant and refugee populations, and children exposed to domestic violence.

Breaking the Silence A Coordinated Response to Sexual Violence in Nova Scotia has released their June 2017 update. This includes information on a free, online training that was launched in April 2017 entitled Supporting Survivors of Sexual Violence: A Nova Scotia Resource as well as other aspects of their Sexual Violence Strategy.

On June 1st, 2017 the Victim Justice Network (VJN) in collaboration with Durham College presented a Live Stream Education Global Classroom event on the discussion topic: Empowering Resilience for Victims & Survivors of Child Abuse. This event was supported by the Department of Justice Canada as part of National Victims and Survivors of Crime Week 2017. Watch the recorded version and learn more at: http://www.victimjusticenetwork.ca/resource/875-empowering-resilience-for-victims-and-survivors-of-child-abuse-in-canada

Fifteen remarkable individuals and organizations from across the province received the Attorney General's Victim Services Awards of Distinction today for their outstanding work on behalf of victims of crime in Ontario.

The Victim Services Awards of Distinction recognize the exceptional achievements of dedicated professionals, organizations and volunteers working to raise awareness of victims' issues, advocate on their behalf and provide support when victims need it the most.

Some of the individuals and groups receiving awards this year include:

  • Debra Fowler, the survivor of a near-fatal assault who became a passionate activist for domestic violence victims in her community
  • Casandra Diamond, who is the founding director of BridgeNorth Newmarket, an organization dedicated to restoring the value and dignity of trafficked women 
  • Distress Centres' Survivor Support Program of Toronto, which offers specialized support to people affected by suicide or homicide and has many volunteers who have been affected by homicide or suicide themselves.

Attorney General Yasir Naqvi presented the awards to all 15 recipients at a ceremony today at Queen's Park.

In recognition of National Victims and Survivors of Crime Awareness Week 2017, the Victim Justice Network delivered a presentation at the Federal Symposium in Calgary, Alberta on Resilience and Victims of Violence, an ongoing research project in partnership with Algonquin College located in Ottawa, Ontario.

Mon, May 29, 2017, 12:00 PM E.S.T. - This webinar in the Family Law Education for Women (FLEW) series discusses the different types of immigration status for non-citizen women in Canada and how status may be affected by their partner and the breakdown of their relationship. It explains the April 2017 changes in immigration law, specifically the removal of conditional permanent residence for sponsored spouses/partners and what this means for women who want to leave an abusive relationship. The webinar will also discuss legal options and tips for staying safe. METRAC's Program Lawyer, Silmy Abdullah, will co-present with Immigration lawyer, Caitlin Maxwell of Equity Legal and the Barbra Schlifer Commemorative Clinic. Register for this webinar at:
https://cc.readytalk.com/r/ap63no6lizd&eom

May 25, 2017 at 12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m. - This webinar in the Family Law Education for Women (FLEW) series reviews the pilot program that provides free independent legal advice (ILA), for survivors of recent and older cases of sexual assault.  This webinar covers who can get free legal advice and what questions a lawyer can help with.  METRAC's Legal Director, Tamar Witelson, co-presents with sexual assault lawyer, Karen Bellehumeur of Jellinek Law Office, Toronto/London. To register visit: 
https://cc.readytalk.com/registration/#/?meeting=r7fvprzh29xy&campaign=pz4gyvc58ubf

On May 18, 2017 Ontario passed the Anti-Human Trafficking Act, 2017, which will increase protection for survivors of human trafficking and make it easier for survivors to pursue compensation. 

The Act enables people affected by human trafficking (including people who have been trafficked, or are at risk of being trafficked) to apply for a restraining order to protect themselves or their children from traffickers. It also makes it possible for survivors to sue their traffickers for compensation through civil court in order to help survivors restore and rebuild their lives.

Disclaimer: Welcome to our Find Help listing of services that provide help for victims of crime.  This listing represents only a subset of the many services and supports available to Canadians across Canada and we hope it is helpful for users of the Victim Justice Network site.  For a more comprehensive listing of services helping victims through all stages of their needs, we do encourage you to avail yourselves of your local 211 phone or online services or, alternatively, of your regional community services listings most of which are included in this site under Information and Referral.  The services listed on this site are based on the most recent information available on those services' individual websites in mid-2015.  We will endeavour to review these annually for accuracy and any changes or discontinuation of service.

Décharge: Voici notre liste des services Find Help visant à aider les victimes de crime. Cette liste ne représente qu’une partie des nombreux services et soutiens mis à la disposition des Canadiens dans tout le pays. Nous espérons qu’elle sera utile aux utilisateurs du site de Victim Justice Network. Si vous souhaitez en obtenir une plus complète, à quelque niveau des besoins des victimes que ce soit, n’hésitez pas à appeler votre numéro local 211 ou à utiliser des services en ligne ou encore les listes de services communautaires régionaux, services qui, pour la plupart, sont indiqués sur ce site sous la rubrique Information and Referral. Ces services ont été relevés dans les toutes dernières informations disponibles à la mi-2015 sur les sites pertinents. Nous nous efforcerons de les revoir chaque année pour qu’ils restent à jour.