Problems Commonly Experienced By Survivors of Homicide Victims
Feelings of guilt for not having protected the victim.
Sensational and/or inaccurate media coverage.
Loss of ability to function on the job, at home or in school.
The strain on marriages and the strain on family relationships.
Effects on health, faith and values.
Effects on other family members, children, friends, and co-workers.
Indifference of the community, including professionals, to the plight of survivors.
Society’s attitude regarding murder as a form of entertainment.
Financial burden of medical, professional counselling, legal and funeral expenses.
Public sympathy for murderers, (i.e. their childhood, drug abuse etc.).
The feeling that the murderer, if found, gets all the help; survivors of homicide victims have few rights. They often feel that the protocol required by the judicial system is insensitive and unfair to the families and survivors of homicide victims.
Outrage about the leniency of the murderer’s sentence.
Disparities in the judicial system (some punishments for “property crimes”, or “white collar crimes”) are as great as or greater than the crime of taking a human life).
Anger, confusion and disillusionment over a plea bargain arrangement/agreement. Feeling that these negotiations devalue the life of their loved one.
Bitterness and loss of faith in the Canadian criminal justice system
After conviction, the long appeals process begins.
Constantly reliving your tragedy through the dreaded parole process.