Law & Order

New 24/7 service to support victims of crime

Victims of crime would have faster access to support under a Liberal Nationals government.

If elected, a Liberal Nationals government would establish a new Victims Support Rapid Response Service which would offer mobile, 24/7 counselling to victims and witnesses.

Nationals Member for Mildura, Peter Crisp, said victims did not currently receive timely support.

“Victims and witnesses of traumatic events need support as soon as possible and this mobile, 24/7 service would offer help in the initial period of grief and shock,” Mr Crisp said.

“Too often in our rural communities there is a lack of support available – this new service will mean victims can start to rebuild their lives as soon as possible.”

The Liberal Nationals have committed $5.42 million over four years to establish the Service, which would be operated by the Department of Justice and Regulation Victims Support Agency.

Responders would include on-call volunteer counsellors, multi-faith chaplains, psychologists and other trained professionals.

“The Victims Support Rapid Response Service would also take some of the load off our emergency services, who, as the first responders, often become de-facto counsellors to people who have witnessed a traumatic event,” Mr Crisp said.

“As well as immediate support, ongoing support will be offered where needed.”

In addition to stronger bail and sentencing policies, the Liberal Nationals have also announced other policies to provide more support for victims, including giving victims a more prominent place in court hearings and better access to compensation.

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