Victims of crime
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It can often be a traumatic experience being a victim of crime. Although we experience many common reactions to crime, everyone’s experience will differ.
The effects of crime can be immediate or can take time before they become apparent. Being informed and getting help to deal with these effects may mean that you will feel more supported and may assist your recovery.
ACT Policing has a dedicated Victims of Crime Team who offer support to victims by providing:
- access to counselling and support services
- assistance with Victim Impact Statements
- information on financial assistance available
- information and support around the court process
- updates on court matters.
Our Pocket Guide for Victims of Crime provides more advice on what to do if you are a victim of crime and who can assist you.
A Victim Impact Statement (VIS) gives you or a close family member/carer the opportunity to participate in the criminal justice process by informing the court and the offender about how the crime has affected you. The court may take this into account when determining the offender's sentence.
A VIS is voluntary and is different to the statement you may have already provided to police as you only write about the harm you have suffered as a result of the crime. This could include physical and psychological effects as well as financial impacts.
If you have suffered injury, loss or damage as a result of being a victim of crime, you may be entitled to financial assistance or compensation.
If you are the victim of a violent crime, are responsible for the care of a victim, or are a related victim to a primary victim who dies as a result of their injury you may be eligible for Financial Assistance.
For more information visit the Financial Assistance Scheme webpage on the Victims Support ACT website.
Compensation can be claimed within the brief of evidence that the police prepare for the Department of Prosecution and the court. You should inform the investigating officer if you wish this to happen.
In March of this year the ACT Legislative Assembly passed the Victims of Crime (Financial Assistance) Act 2016. The proposed new model will make financial assistance available to a greater range of victims of crime; as well as being a more user-friendly process.
The new scheme commences on 1 July 2016. Under this scheme the Victims of Crime Commissioner will be the decision maker for applications and it will be an administrative scheme. For further information about the new scheme please visit the Victims Support website.
ACT Corrective Services maintains the ACT Victims Register and has the duty of considering the possible release of an offender(s) on parole.
Victims who have registered are able to receive timely, relevant and accurate information about an offender’s incarceration and in the case of an offender released on a community based order, the management of the offender’s sentence.
For information on family violence including understanding family violence, protection orders and support services visit the Family Violence section of this website.
Survivors and Mates Support Network (SAMSN)
Ph: 1800 472 676
Ph: 131 114
Blue Knot Helpline (Supporting adult survivors of childhood trauma and abuse)
Ph: 1300 657 380
Victim Support ACT
Ph: 1800 822 272 or 02 6205 2066
Domestic Violence Crisis Service
Ph: 02 6280 0900
Ph: 0408 006 616 (Court Support – Court Advocacy Program)
Legal Aid ACT
Ph: 1300 654 314
Ph: 02 6230 6999
Ph: 02 6287 2226
Ph: 1300 789 978
Women’s Legal Service
Ph: 02 6257 4499
Communities at Work (Community Pantry/Side by Side – Volunteers Assisting Victims of Crime)
Ph: 02 6293 6500
Ph: 1300 364 277
Catholic Care Canberra & Goulburn – Red Hill Office
Ph: 02 6162 6100
Canberra Rape Crisis Centre
Ph: 02 6247 2525
Service Assisting Male Survivors of Sexual Assault SAMSSA
Ph: 02 6287 3935