Victims’ Rights

posted by Judge_Burke @ 15:33 PM
January 20, 2017

There has been a dramatic change during the last couple of decades in the attitude of courts toward victim rights in the United States. Understanding where the United States has come from and where it might go is important for judges in the United States. But it is equally important for Canadian judges. Marie Manikis (McGill Faculty of Law) has posted Imagining the Future of Victims’ Rights in Canada: A Comparative Perspective ((2015) 13(1) Ohio State Journal of Criminal Law 163-186) on SSRN.

Here is the abstract:

The role of victims of crime in common law jurisdictions has significantly changed over the last few decades from that of simple bystanders and witnesses for the Crown – if needed – to more present and active participants in the criminal justice process. Despite this general trend towards increased participation, victim-related policies have evolved very differently in the different common law jurisdictions. The following piece examines the evolution of victims’ rights in Canada and compares their development to those within other jurisdictions,particularly in England, Wales, and the United States. It argues that the evolution of several victims’ rights has been incremental, generally slower and more limited in Canada as compared to other common law jurisdictions, namely England and Wales and the United States. Hence, it highlights the limitations of Canadian initiatives with regards to victims’ rights and brings forward some of the different initiatives and their implementation in these other jurisdictions as possible measures to consider in shaping the future of victims’ rights in Canada.


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