May 25, 2010
FREDERICTON (CNB) - Direct victims of violent crime who have suffered personal loss or injury will be eligible for increased rates of financial compensation for specific expenses, effective Tuesday, June 1. The total maximum amount of compensation for eligible expenses will also be increased.
Under the Victims Services Act, financial benefits may be available to assist with expenses incurred as a direct result of a violent crime, not covered by other means.
"As of June 1, compensation rates for counselling, medication, eye wear, transportation, relocation expenses, and funeral expenses will be increased," Public Safety Minister and Solicitor General John W. Foran said. "This change reflects the increase in costs for these services since the regulation first came into place in 1996."
The total maximum amount of compensation for eligible expenses will also be increased to $10,000 from $5,000.
"Being the victim of a crime can be a traumatic and challenging experience," Foran said. "We know feelings of anxiety, fear and loneliness can be difficult for victims of crime to manage alone, and there is the additional fear of having to navigate the criminal justice system. The good news is that victims need not suffer and confront these obstacles alone - our department's Victim Services can offer assistance in a variety of ways. As we work together to build a safer New Brunswick, victims of crime should know that they will be supported."
Compensation is offered under specific categories after all other avenues of funding have been exhausted.
The new rates will apply to offences which occur on or after Tuesday, June 1.
Victim Services provides a range of support services and programs for victims, including trauma and short-term counselling, court support and preparation, and follow-up information after the court process.
MEDIA CONTACT: Meghan Cumby, communications, Department of Public Safety, 506-444-5267.