The South Australian Government is considering doubling the maximum payout to victims of crime from $50,000 to $100,000. The compensation rate has not changed since 1990 and the South Australian Government has some $100 Million stored in its Victims of Crime Fund which is meant to be used to support victims of crime.
Michael O’Connell, The Commissioner for Victims’ Rights, said any increase in compensation would be welcomed. He went on to add that compensation has both a symbolic and has a real value, it is an acknowledgement that victims have been harmed and that they should be compensated for that harm.
The South Australian Government is also considering new laws to crack down on the number of suspended sentences handed down to repeat violent offenders. Mr O’Connell said that many victims of crime are angry about offenders being given suspended sentences and spared jail, particularly those offenders that have been given multiple chances to rehabilitate and have failed to do so.
The Victorian Government should take note of these forward thinking South Australian initiatives.