Green Party Calls for “Victims First” Model of Justice

The Green Party fully supports the recommendations of Canada’s Federal Ombudsman for Victims of Crime, Sue O’Sullivan released in a special report – Shifting the Conversation.

“The Green Party of Canada is calling for a Victims First approach to justice in this country,” said Green Party Leader Elizabeth May.  “For far too long we have been obsessed with a re-active justice system that knows only punishment. We can do better.”

Shifting the Conversation calls for an approach to justice that puts the needs of the victims first and highlights three areas where practical changes need to be made:

  • ensure more information is available to victims regarding their rights and the offender who harmed them;
  • allow victims to participate more meaningfully throughout the criminal justice process; and
  • increase tangible, financial supports for victims.

“There can be no justice until the needs of victims are met,” said Jared Giesbrecht (Green Party Justice Critic).  “The Green Party stands with victims, victim advocates, and service providers in calling for a Victims First model of justice as well as a greater focus upon crime prevention.  The recommendations of this report should be taken very seriously by this government and implemented as soon as possible.”

“This government is pouring tens of millions of tax dollars into building prisons across the country, but has forgotten the whole point of a justice system – support victims and prevent crime,” said Mr. Giesbrecht.  “One of the best ways to acknowledge and respect victims of crime is to make crime prevention a central priority of the federal government.  Crime prevention is victim prevention.”