Love, Sex, Violence and Crime: An overview of Criminal Law and Violence Against Women

Resource Origin: 
Springtide Resources
Frontline workers in the violence against women sector
Self-directed, open registration online training
Weeks Available: 
6 weeks access upon registration

This self-directed online course will provide participants with an increased ability to provide support and advocacy for women who have experienced physical or sexual violence, or criminal harassment, and who are, or are considering becoming involved with the criminal court and/or related systems. These systems include the police, the Crown, victim services such as Victim Witness Assistance Program, legal aid and quasi-legal systems such as professional colleges and the Criminal Injuries Compensation Board.

Course content developed by Pamela Cross

This course was developed in 2011 and, as a result, the legal information provided is current only to that date. It may no longer accurately reflect the law or application of the law. Please be aware of this when you take the course and use the information in it. Springtide Resources and Pamela Cross take no responsibility for any reliance made on information that is out of date

Learning Objectives:

  • Understand and be able to apply information about common criminal court and related processes and systems, including but not limited to: police reports, bail hearings, rape kits, trials and sentencing hearings
  • Understand common criminal court and related terms and language
  • Be able to analyze common barriers and challenges faced by women, including structural and systemic barriers within the criminal law and court process, and create strategies with women to address these barriers and challenges
  • Apply information about local court services and systems to individual women’s cases through advocacy and support
  • Provide advocacy and support for women involved with the criminal court because of violence they have experienced in their personal lives

Participants will be provided with information about criminal law, court processes and services that are relevant to and reflective of the experiences, realities and needs of women who have experienced physical or sexual violence or criminal harassment and who are engaged or may become engaged with the criminal system, whether as a victim/complainant or as an accused in cases of dual or counter charging.

The course will provide an intersectional analysis for the teaching, that acknowledges the very different social locations of women, especially those women who are marginalized for one or more reasons, and the impact this has on their interaction with the legal system and related services and supports.

Legal information provided will be current, accurate and realistic.

The course will make clear the difference between legal information and legal advice and will establish that this information is NOT a replacement for legal advice and representation.

The course is organized into 4 units. Each unit uses a variety of teaching/learning techniques, including video lectures, links to online and print resources, self-directed quizzes, and case studies.  This self-directed course provides 6 weeks of access to all the material and participants can work according to their own schedule and pace during that time frame.

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