The Victims’ Bill of Rights, 1995 establishes a set of principles to support victims of crime throughout the justice process. It requires that victims be treated with courtesy, compassion, and respect for their personal dignity and privacy.
The Victims’ Bill of Rights also specifies that victims should have information about:
- services and remedies available to them;
- financial compensation that might assist them;
- the progress of police investigations that relate to the crime;
- the charges laid with respect to the crime, and if no charges are laid the reasons why;
- procedures of the court and the victims’ role in the prosecution;
- dates and places of court proceedings, and the outcome of the proceedings including any appeals;
- any pre-trial arrangements made with the accused that relate to a plea entered at the trial;
- the release of an accused on bail;
- the sentence given to an accused, if convicted;
- a decision that the accused is unfit to stand trial;
- their right to submit a victim impact statement; and
- notice of any application for the offender’s release, and notice if the offender escapes.
The full text of the VBR can be found at the ServiceOntario e-Laws website.
Victims’ Justice Fund
The Victims’ Bill of Rights, 1995 establishes the Victims’ Justice Fund, which is a dedicated fund that is used to support programs and services for victims of crime in Ontario. The money in the Victims’ Justice Fund is collected from court imposed fines under the Provincial Offences Act (mostly Highway Traffic Act violations excluding parking tickets) and the Criminal Code.