All victims of crime in Nova Scotia wanting to know about support services will be informed how to get it after an amendment to the Police Act introduced today, Nov. 5. “Being a victim of crime can be very traumatic and without knowing about the services offered it can have lasting effects,” said Justice Minister Ross Landry. “This change will make sure all crime victims in the province will be referred to helpful support services in a timely manner.” In the past, some victims of crime in Nova Scotia were not informed of available services they may have needed to better cope. The amendment, once supported by regulations, will ensure all victims receive offers of that information. All police in Nova Scotia, including the RCMP, will be required to provide contact information for crime victims to the victim services sections of the Department of Justice and their own agencies. Victims will have an opportunity to make an informed decisions about using the support services. “We support this amendment and the help it will offer victims of crime, including those involved with domestic violence,” said Stephanie MacInnis-Langley, executive director of the Nova Scotia Advisory Council on the Status of Women. “These victims may be unaware of the help available to them and a call offering referrals would be welcomed by many of them.” Victim services units provide information and assistance to crime victims, who are often appreciative when they receive a call outlining services that can provide comfort and support. Once provided with contact information, victim Services units will contact victims directly with the offer of help. Victims have the option of turning down the offer of services. Victim services staff can provide a number of services including education about the criminal justice system, updates on their cases, applying for restitution and for criminal injuries counselling, support services for child victims and witnesses, and submitting victim impact statements to the courts.