A key concern of parents is keeping their children safe. When children or youth are victims of crime, this can be very hard for parents and caregivers as well as the young victims.
If a child is a victim of crime, Victim Services can provide support for the child and their family members.
If your child has been accused of a crime, please visit the Youth Justice website on how to help your child.
Victim Services provides a range of support and information to all victims of crime, including children and youth. In terms of children and youth, we:
Being victimized can shatter a young person’s view of the world as a safe place. Children and youth may be affected by crime in many ways, emotionally and physically.
At different development stages, children may express emotions differently.
Responses can include things like being more clingy, withdrawing, having stomach aches or exhibiting anxiety and depression. They might deny there is anything wrong. They might “act out” when they find it hard to express their feelings.
Emotions among parents and other family members can be significant as well. They can include shock, disbelief, shame, blame and fear of further harm. Parents might even be angry at the child depending on the circumstances. Siblings might be confused or become overprotective.
It is important that families get the support they need. If you are affected by a crime, even if not directly, you can access the support of Victim Services.
Parents and caregivers can be a great source of support to their child after a crime.
Everyone has a legal obligation to report situations where a child or young person (under 19) needs protection.
For example, if they are being abused, neglected or sexually exploited, this must be reported to Famiiy and Children Services. If children are part of a family with a domestic violence situation, Family and Children Services need to be informed.
To report online situations where children or young people are being sexually abused or exploited, contact the Cybertip.ca tip line. Canada’s national tip line receives information from the public about child pornography, luring, child sex tourism and child prostitution.
Cybertip also provides information, referrals and other resources to help Canadians keep their children safe while on the Internet.