In June 2021, Victims of Crime Commissioner Fiona McCormack announced her first systemic inquiry that focuses on victim participation in the justice system.

Participation includes being given information and regular updates, being asked your views before key decisions are made and having these views taken into account, as much as possible.  

The Commissioner is putting people who are victims of crime at the centre of her inquiry and wants to understand their experiences of participation in the justice system.

This includes people who:

  • reported the crime to the police
  • accessed victim services and/or
  • have been involved in the court process. 

The Commissioner also wants to hear from victims who did not contact police or access these services and the reasons why.

The inquiry is an opportunity for people who are victims of crime to have a voice and say on their experiences with support services and justice agencies, and what new laws, policies or programs might be needed to help victims participate, as defined by their entitlements under the Victims’ Charter.

The Commissioner welcomes the opportunity to understand and learn from your experience as part of the inquiry.

You can find out more about the Commissioner’s role (External link) and watch a short video on the systemic inquiry

Who can be involved?

To be involved in the Commissioner’s inquiry, you need to be a:

  • victim of crime
  • witness to a crime that caused you injury
  • parent, guardian or carer of a child who is a victim of crime
  • close family member of a deceased victim of crime.

You also need to have experienced the crime in Victoria and be 16 years of age or over. 

How can I get involved?

The inquiry will hear from victims in a range of ways.

You can have your say by responding to an anonymous online survey that will take 20-30 minutes to complete.

A survey for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples (External link) who are victims of crime is available.

The victims of crime survey is also available in Arabic | Dari | Simplified Chinese | Vietnamese | Easy English (External link).

If you prefer, you can be involved in an interview with the Commissioner’s staff. You can use these links to book in a telephone interview (External link) or an online interview (External link). If you experience any difficulties booking an interview please call 1800 010 017.

Prior to booking your interview, please make sure you have read and understand the Consent Form (External link).

For people who are part of a victim support group or wish to be involved together, you can participate in a focus group.

You can register your interest to be involved in a focus group by emailing engagement@vocc.vic.gov.au (External link) 

We can ensure you are provided with an interpreter or assistance from the National Relay Service.  

How will my information be used?

The Commissioner is independent from government and the justice system. Information provided to the Commissioner by people who are victims of crime will help her better understand their experiences.

The Commissioner will write a report to government about what she hears from victims. The Commissioner will use her influence to advocate to government and other decision-makers about what needs to change to improve laws, processes or programs for victims of crime. The Commissioner does not have the power to make government or agencies act on the recommendations in her report. It will be up to government about whether to act on the inquiry recommendations.

In the report, the Commissioner will use summarised information and may use direct quotes provided by victims of crime from surveys, interviews or focus groups.  No information that reveals anyone’s identity will be used. The report may be publicly available. 

The Commissioner will use the findings of the inquiry to inform her policy, media and advocacy to promote the recognition, inclusion, participation, and respect of Victorian victims of crime.

If you would like to receive updates about the inquiry, how victims’ voices have influenced the Commissioner’s work and future engagement opportunities, please email engagement@vocc.vic.gov.au (External link) 

Will my information remain anonymous?

All information provided by victims as part of this inquiry will be anonymous and securely stored.

The Commissioner will not share your information with any other individuals, services or government departments but will communicate the broad themes that arise during consultations with people who are victims of crime.