MONTREAL, QUEBEC--(Marketwire - Jan. 24, 2013) - The Honourable Rob Nicholson, P.C., Q.C., M.P. for Niagara Falls, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, today announced $1.2 million over three years in funding for the Centre d'expertise Marie-Vincent in Montréal to undertake projects that will serve victims of sexual abuse. The funding comes from the Department of Justice Canada and from Status of Women Canada.

"Our Government remains unwavering in its commitment to protecting Canadians so that our communities are safe places to live, work and raise families," said Minister Nicholson. "These projects will ensure that victims and their families have access to high-quality programs and services."

The funding is being provided as follows:

  • $350,000 from the Department of Justice Canada for the Centre to offer more and improved services to young children in Montréal and the surrounding area who have experienced sexual abuse.
  • $223,905 from Status of Women Canada for the Centre to support women whose daughters have been victimized.
  • $630,074 from the Government of Canada ($380,074 from Status of Women Canada and $250,000 from the Department of Justice) for the Centre to strengthen the knowledge base of Aboriginal service providers so they can better address the issue of the sexual assault of girls.

"Our Government is taking action to end violence against children in communities across Canada," said the Honourable Rona Ambrose, Minister of Public Works and Government Services and Minister for Status of Women. "We are proud to support projects like these that help children and families who have been victims of sexual abuse."

"Given the many needs of young victims of sexual abuse, we welcome all funding support to help them," said Lucie Joyal, Executive Director of the Centre d'expertise de Marie-Vincent.

The Department of Justice is providing funding through the Victims Fund. Funds are available to provinces, territories and non-governmental organizations for programs and services that give victims of crime a more effective voice in the criminal justice system. The Government of Canada has allocated more than $90 million over the past six years for initiatives that benefit victims of crime, including funding for provincial and territorial government programs.

Since 2007, through the Women's Program, Status of Women Canada has approved more than $54 million for projects that seek to address violence against women and girls. The Government's support for community-based projects has nearly doubled since 2006-2007, from $10.8 million to close to $19 million, its highest level ever.


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Backgrounder: Child Advocacy Centres

A Child Advocacy Centre (CAC) adopts a seamless, coordinated and collaborative approach to addressing the needs of child and youth victims of crime. A CAC seeks to minimize system-induced trauma by providing a child-friendly setting for a young victim or witness and his or her family.

Professional services offered by a CAC include coordinated forensic interviews, examination of the child by a medical professional, victim advocacy including court preparation and support and trauma counselling. One of the goals of a CAC is to minimize the number of interviews and questions directed at a child, thereby minimizing system-induced trauma.

CACs help children and their families navigate the justice system in a number of ways. These include providing a child or youth with a safe and comfortable environment in which to be interviewed by criminal justice professionals and minimizing the number of interviews. CACs may also provide education and training to justice professionals on best practices for interviewing child victims and witnesses. As an example, interviews recorded by video are an effective method for gathering valuable information that can help both the young victim and the justice system. Ultimately CACs lead to better communication between agencies supporting young victims.

It has been shown that investigations conducted by CACs are cost-effective and can expedite decision making by Crown prosecutors laying criminal charges. Parents whose children receive services from CACs are more satisfied with the investigation process and interview procedures, and those children who attend CACs are generally satisfied with the investigation and are more likely to state they were not scared during the forensic interviewing process.

Backgrounder: Federal Victims Strategy and Victims Fund

Since 2007, when the Government introduced the Federal Victims Strategy, more than $90 million has been committed to respond to the needs of victims of crime. Most recently, in Economic Action Plan 2012, the Government committed an additional $5 million over five years for new or enhanced Child Advocacy Centres, bringing the total Government of Canada commitment to Child Advocacy Centres to $10.25 million.

The objective of the Strategy, which is led by the Department of Justice Canada, is to give victims a more effective voice in the criminal justice system. The Department of Justice works in close collaboration with other federal institutions, as well as victims, victim advocates, provincial and territorial governments, service providers and others involved in the criminal justice system. The Department of Justice develops policy and criminal law reform, funds various programs to meet the needs of victims of crime, and shares information about issues of importance to victims of crime.

Within the Federal Victim Strategy, the Victims Fund is a grants and contributions program administered by the Department of Justice. Funds are available each year to fund provinces, territories and non-governmental organizations whose projects, activities and operations support the objectives of the Federal Victims Strategy.

The Victims Fund provides funding to projects and activities that:

  • enhance victim assistance programs across Canada;
  • promote access to justice and participation in the justice system and the development of law, policies, and programs;
  • promote the implementation of principles, guidelines, and laws designed to address the needs of victims of crime and articulate their role in the criminal justice system;
  • contribute to increased knowledge and awareness of the impact of victimization, the needs of victims of crime, available services, assistance and programs, and legislation; and
  • promote, encourage and/or enhance governmental and non-governmental organizations' involvement in the identification of victim needs and gaps in services and in the development and delivery of programs, services and assistance to victims, including capacity building within non-governmental organizations.

More information is available on the Department of Justice Canada's website.

Backgrounder - Status of Women Canada: Women's Program

The objective of the Women's Program is to achieve the full participation of women in the economic, social and democratic life of Canada. Funding is provided to eligible organizations in support of projects at the local, regional and national levels that address the following three priority areas:

  • Ending violence against women and girls
  • Improving women's and girls' economic security and prosperity
  • Encouraging women and girls in leadership and decision-making roles

Funding is available for time-specific projects of 36 months or less that address barriers to women's participation and equality in Canadian society. Eligibility is determined by the Women's Program's funding criteria. Funding is not provided for ongoing activities, such as an organization's operations and administration.

Through Status of Women Canada, the government's support for community-based projects has nearly doubled since 2006/2007, from $10.8 million to close to $19 million per year, its highest level ever.

Since 2007, more than $54 million in funding has been approved for projects that seek to address violence against women and girls.

More information is available on Status of Women Canada's web site:

Contact Information:

Julie Di Mambro
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Justice

Department of Justice Canada
Media Relations