The mission of the Vancouver Police Department's Victim Services Unit is to provide crime victims, witnesses and their family members with professional, supportive and timely assistance, to lessen the impact of crime and trauma.
Referrals to victim services are typically made by the officer on scene; however, individuals can self-refer to the program by contacting the Victim Services Unit. Staff are able to assist victims by providing emotional support, information and referrals, and assistance with Victim Impact Statements and Crime Victim Assistance forms.
Victim Services provides support to individuals for all types of crime in the City of Vancouver, who may or may not have reported the crime to the police or who may or may not be involved with the criminal justice system.
Meet Lucca, the VPD's Trauma Dog:
Victim Services provides victims with emotional support to assist in lessening the effects of crime and trauma. The program does not provide counselling services to victims; however, we will provide appropriate referrals to counselling services.
Victim Services can provide information on:
the justice system
relevant federal and provincial legislation
programs pertaining to victims of crime, crime prevention, safety planning and other resources
Justice Related Information
Victim Services can provide or facilitate victim's access to case-specific information which may include:
the status of the police investigation
charges laid against the offender
outcome of court appearances
the custodial stats of the convicted offender and length of sentence / parole information
Practical Assistance & Support
Victim Services can:
provide additional supports and or services and make appropriate referrals to community, government, justice, health and / or other resources
make appropriate referrals for community resources such as counselling, support groups, financial assistance and housing
assist victims in completing documentation and application forms for the Crime Victim Assistance Program (a financial benefits program administered by the Ministry of Public Safety and Solicitor General) and Victim Impact Statement
provide other practical support and assistance as needed
At the request of the police, Victim Services will attend a crime scene to provide crisis intervention, emotional support and practical assistance for incidents such as:
CVAP is a financial benefits program to assist victims, immediate family members, and witnesses in dealing with the effects of violent crime. CVAP helps to offset financial loss and assist in recovery from injury. CVAP is part of a network of victim service programs throughout B.C. For more information and a link to the application, please visit the Crime Victim Assistance Program website.
Victim Safety Unit
The Victim Safety Unit provides information to victims about the status of the accused (person charged with the crime) or offender (person convicted of the crime) when the person is supervised by B.C Corrections. Victims must register for this service. Please visit the Victim Safety Unit website for more information and application form.
Many different Vancouver community agencies provide specialized Victim Services.