Prime Minister Stephen Harper today reaffirmed the Government of Canada’s support for victims of crime at the opening of the fifth annual National Victims of Crime Awareness Week symposium. The Prime Minister was joined by Rob Nicholson, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada.
“Our Government is committed to ensuring that victims have a stronger voice in the criminal justice system,” said the Prime Minister. “And as we committed to do in the Speech from the Throne, we intend to introduce legislation to make the victim surcharge imposed on offenders mandatory and to better fund services for victims.”
Prime Minister Harper and Minister Nicholson addressed the Ottawa symposium attended by victims, victim advocates, victim service providers, non-governmental organizations and policy-makers.
“Our Government has always made the protection of law-abiding Canadians one of our very top priorities. We have always put the safety of law-abiding Canadians first. And we have always believed that every victim matters,” said the Prime Minister. “So I call on Parliament to recognize that every victim matters, to get tough on criminals and protect law-abiding Canadians and to pass our vital law and order legislation,” concluded Prime Minister Harper.
In 2007, the Government of Canada created the Office of the Federal Ombudsman of Victims of Crime to serve as an independent resource for victims in Canada. It also committed to respond to the needs of victims of crime more effectively. This year’s Speech from the Throne and Budget 2010 continue this support for victims of crime.
National Victims of Crime Awareness Week provides an opportunity to raise awareness about victim issues, programs, services and laws that can assist victims of crime and their families.
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