Department of Justice

Victim Services

Supporting Victims

Every victim has their own unique experience of a crime. They also have different ways of responding and coping.

It important to just be there for victims of crime and to be patient as they work through their emotions.

How you can support a victim:

  • Let them know you believe them and will be there to support them.
  • Reinforce that the crime was not their fault.
  • Understand the desire not to talk about things. This is a normal reaction.
  • Ask them what they need.
  • Encourage the victim to seek support and counselling. They don’t have to report a crime to get support.
  • Go with them to medical appointments or if they report to the police. Sit with them in court.
  • Help them learn about their options. Contact Victim Services or read information on this site about dealing with different crimes or understanding the court process. You might also want to look at our Learn More page.

If you are supporting a victim of sexual assault, you can find a lot of helpful information in the booklet How to support a woman who has been sexually assaulted .

Take care of yourself

Don’t forget to take care of yourself. Allow yourself time to process what has happened.

If you need support or information, contact Victim Services.  We can help you understand how you can support someone, and also how you can get support for yourself. If you are affected by a crime, you are a victim.

Victimization affects communities

Victimization also affects the whole community. We need to work together to create a circle of safety and respect and to reduce the tolerance for violence.