Victims of Crime Research Digest No. 8

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Welcome to Issue 8 of the Victims of Crime Research Digest! We are excited to bring you five articles about some excellent research occurring in Canada. This research, like the research presented in each issue of the Victims of Crime Research Digest, has played and continues to play a role in increasing awareness and building knowledge on victims issues in Canada, just as the National Victims of Crime Awareness Week (NVCAW) raises awareness and builds knowledge of victims issues.

The theme for NVCAW 2015 is “Shaping the Future Together.” This year marks the 10th anniversary of the NVCAW, and three symposia will be held across the country – in Ottawa, Vancouver and Halifax.

As the country moves forward with the Canadian Victims Bill of Rights, we thought it important to share research on a variety of issues for which there are no national data. Hence, the focus in this issue is on testimonial aids and victim impact statements. We begin this issue with an article by Pamela Hurley describing the results of interviews with young witnesses about their use of closed-circuit television (CCTV). This article is followed by a media scan by Lisa Ha who sought to determine how often young victims can be identified via media reports. Susan McDonald and Lisa Ha then take a look at how two Criminal Code provisions, namely exclusion orders and the appointment of counsel for self-represented accused when cross-examining the victim, are working in the territories. Melissa Lindsay examines data on victim impact statements collected from a number of provincial courts as part of a multi-site criminal court processing study. Finally, Katie Scrim and Naomi Giff-MacKinnon examine the role and impact of Family Liaison Coordinators/Missing Persons Liaisons in the western provinces.

We hope this issue of the Victims of Crime Research Digest helps all of us working for victims of crime to raise awareness and build knowledge, so that we are “shaping the future together.” As always, if you have comments, please do not hesitate to be in touch.

Susan McDonald 
Principal Researcher
Research and Statistics Division
Pamela Arnott
Director and Senior Counsel
Policy Centre for Victim Issues

Table of Contents

  1. The Use of Closed-Circuit Television: The Experiences of Child and Youth Witnesses in Ontario’s West Region
  2. Identifying Young Victims in the Media in Canada: A Media Scan
  3. Exclusion of the Public, Appointment of Counsel: Tools to Help Victim Witnesses in Canada’s North
  4. Victim Impact Statements in a Multi-Site Criminal Court Processing Survey
  5. Specialized Victim Services for the Families of Missing and Murdered Aboriginal Women: An Overview of Scope, Reach and Impact
  6.  Victim-Related Conferences in 2015