Victim participation and therapeutic jurisprudence: a Canadian perspective

Author(s)Wemmers, Jo-Anne
Title Victim participation and therapeutic jurisprudence: a Canadian perspective
Source Conference paper 8 March 2007, International Institute for the Sociology of Law, Onati, Spain.
Date 2007
Document type Conference paper
Coverage Canada
Summary This study aimed to better understand the potential for the healing of victims of crime in the criminal justice system by examining victim participation and its perceived impact on victims. For the study, in-depth interviews were conducted with prosecutors, defence lawyers, judges and victim assistance personnel about their experiences, including areas of respect and recognition, support and information and regaining control. Comparing the responses of the victim support workers with those of the public prosecutors reveals both similarities and differences. For example, both the support workers and the prosecutors recognise the therapeutic value of information and recognition but the prosecutors were more focused on their relationship with the victim rather than just information. The finding that the two groups recognise the importance of how victims are treated by authorities for the victim's psychological well being was encouraging. Further research is recommended with a larger sample.
Keywords Victim participation; criminal justice system; therapeutic; prosecutors; support workers; adversarial justice system
Topic Victims rights