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Victim Fine Surcharge: Reforming the Judicial Treatment of Crime Victims

WHEREAS Canadians are supportive of restorative justice, there are limited provisions for this in the Criminal Code;

WHEREAS criminal injury compensation schemes administered by the provinces and territories offer unsatisfactory compensation to victims;

WHEREAS most victims seeking substantial recompense for their injuries and losses are left to pursue matters through the courts at their own expense;

WHEREAS many victims of crime lack the resources required to pursue litigation in the courts;

WHEREAS victims of violence and abuse may be vulnerable to intimidation and extra-legal coercion, preventing them from taking further action;

WHEREAS a growing body of academic experts, including UVic law professor Michelle Lawrence who was consulted for this proposal, is calling for sweeping reforms that put victims at the center of our justice system;

WHEREAS further intellectual sustenance for the proposal can be found in B. Perrin, Victim Law: The Law of Victims of Crime in Canada (Toronto, ON: Thomson Reuters, 2017);

BE IT RESOLVED that the Liberal Party of Canada urge the Government of Canada to enhance support for victims by reforming the nature and scope of remedies available at sentencing to crime victims:

  • Repeal the Victim Fine Surcharge;
  • Amend the sentencing provisions of the Criminal Code to provide for compensation for non-pecuniary loss;
  • Create an even-handed federal criminal injury compensation scheme;
  • Assign resources to the enforcement of compensation orders;
  • Ensure prompt and fair access to restorative justice processes, in appropriate cases;
  • Put fixed monetary amounts on non-monetary impacts of crime.


Contact: John Moody

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