Prime Minister Stephen Harper today issued the following statement marking National Victims of Crime Awareness Week, taking place from April 21 to 27, 2013:
“Our Government fully recognizes the devastating impact that violent crime has on victims and their families, both in the immediate and long term: the physical and psychological damage, the economic challenges posed by not being able to go to work, as well as the health costs.
I hope that this week, Canadians are reminded of the multiple hardships that victims face and I encourage them to learn more about what they can do to support victims of crime and their families. This year’s theme – We All Have a Role – shines a light on the tremendous work being done by a wide range of dedicated professionals and volunteers to help alleviate the suffering of victims of crime.
Victims and their families have repeatedly told us that they need stronger and more coordinated support from the justice, corrections, labour and health systems to facilitate their recovery. In response, we have taken important steps to help them get back on their feet and give them a more significant role in the justice and correctional systems, giving their voice the respect it deserves.
Government of Canada initiatives have helped fund projects and services across the country that benefit victims of crime, minimize the economic burdens of parents of murdered or missing children, increase the efficiency of the justice system, strengthen laws against perpetrators, and, ensure child and youth victims and non-offending family members have access to child advocacy centers that they can turn to for help.
In the years to come, we will continue to fight for victims’ rights by working to create a Victims Bill of Rights and make meaningful changes so that every victim knows that their concerns are felt, heard and acted upon.”
For more information about the government’s accomplishments in fighting crime and supporting victims, please visit: http://pm.gc.ca/eng/media.asp?id=5279