Victim Support Creating More Victims
Victim Support is offering up to $250 to “victims/survivors” of “sexual violence”, towards the costs “of dealing with the immediate effects of the crime and investigation”. Examples of such possible costs are given but the list is open-ended. See the information below. My response:
1. Why has “sexual violence” been singled out as qualifying for a grant, when most other forms of criminal victimization will also incur costs? Could it be because it’s mainly women who are subjected to and/or allege sexual offences?
2. Why are the terms “victims/survivors” used when the grant is actually given to complainants? Is it assumed that every complaint must be true?
3. Won’t this grant provide a further incentive for people to make false allegations? (In addition to the incentives of ACC money and other possible secondary gain.) Why is Victim Support doing something that will actually increase crime (in the form of false complaints)?
4. “Sexual violence” complaints are often unaccompanied by any evidence. It will be too easy for someone who has spent their grocery money at the pokies to get a quick $250. The chances of being charged with making a false complaint are almost zero unless you are really stupid and admit you made it up.
5. Many sexual prosecutions are based on the issue of whether consent was given, and the exact definition of consent (which, even when clearly given at the time can retrospectively be seen as not having been given on various grounds – see s128A Crimes Act 1961). The law thereby provides an easy opportunity to claim sexual assault when you actually participated willingly, with virtually no chance of being charged with false complaint because all the physical facts will be true. Pity the poor bugger who had sex with you and now faces years in prison.
6. The grant is supposed to cover expenses incurred by complainants, but no proof will be required of any actual expenses. Applicants are only asked to keep their receipts “for reference until the grant has been paid”. Why make it so easy for applicants to be dishonest and to avoid any comeback later?
7. The grant remains yours even if you withdraw the complaint. What is the real agenda here?
1. Applicants for the sexual violence grant must:
– be a victim/survivor of a ‘sexual crime’ that occurred on or after 1 January 2010
– have reported the crime to the Police
– have incurred costs as a result of the crime
2. Applicants may claim up to $250 towards the costs of dealing with the immediate effects of the
crime and investigation, e.g.
– Clothing, footwear, and personal belongings (e.g. cell phone) with the victim/survivor at the time of the crime that were
stolen, lost or damaged as a result of the crime, or taken by Police for their investigation.
– Temporary accommodation, childcare, and meals for the victim/survivor and their dependent/s if the crime occurred in the
– Car cleaning or car repair if the crime is committed in the victim/survivor’s car and it is soiled or damaged. Car rental if
the car is taken by the Police for the investigation.
– Repairs to the victim/survivor’s house, if the crime occurred there. For example, broken windows, locks, damage to house
or contents as a result of the crime.
– Income lost for time off work giving statements to/being interviewed by the Police.
– Costs of travelling to and from a Police station for the investigation, for example, for interviewing and statements, and also
travel to and from a forensic medical exam.
How to apply
Complete this form, including applicant and support worker signatures and either post or fax to Victim Support (Fax 04 495 3076
or post to Victim Support, PO Box 3017, Wellington). Contact the Victim Support Scheme Administrator on 0800 865868 Monday
to Friday 9.00am — 5.00pm with any questions.
Frequently asked questions
1. What happens to personal information that I put on the form?
The form is confidential and is securely stored at Victim Support National Office. Bank account details are only used to pay the
grant by direct credit. Your name and the Police incident number are only used by Victim Support to ask the Police to confirm
that you have reported the crime.
2. Is approval automatic?
If all the required information is included on the form and you meet the criteria above the grant will be paid into your bank
account within 5 working days. If information is missing we will contact your support worker as soon as possible.
3. What if I don’t have receipts?
Receipts will not normally be required but if receipts have been obtained they should be kept for reference until the grant is paid.
4. What happens if I don’t know the Police incident number?
This is on the complaint acknowledgement form the Police left with you or can be obtained from the officer in charge.
Your Support Worker will be able to help you access this. If you cannot find the number we will try to verify your application
with the Police using your name.
5. What happens if I withdraw my complaint to the police?
If a grant is approved and paid before that happens you are entitled to keep the grant, unless you are subsequently charged with
laying a false complaint.
Victim Support administers a grant of $250 for victims/survivors of sexual violence.
Financial Assistance for
victim/survivors of sexual violence