CASE UPDATE - ANNUAL REPORT 2010-2011
ADDING INSULT TO INJURY – CRIMINAL INJURIES COMPENSATION BOARD
The Ombudsman continues to monitor the implementation of the recommendations from his February 2007 report, Adding Insult to Injury, to ensure that victims of violent crime and their families receive timely and appropriate services from the Criminal Injuries Compensation Board.
In March 2010, the board chair advised the Ombudsman that his report has had an important role in improving the CICB’s administration of compensation efforts for victims of crime. Only one of the Ombudsman’s recommendations has yet to be implemented – the creation of an advisory committee consisting of crime victims and their advocates. The board has advised the Ombudsman that it is considering establishing a formal advisory relationship with the Office for Victims of Crime to enable it to obtain input from stakeholders in a timely and cost-effective manner.
In September 2010, the CICB implemented a “regional triage team” pilot project to improve the overall service it offers and to reduce its claims processing time to under 12 months. (At the time of the Ombudsman’s 2007 report, victims’ claims took an average of three years to be processed by the CICB.) This project resulted in several improvements and two more triage teams were added in April 2011.
Statistics provided by the CICB indicate it has continued to reduce delays. On March 31,
2011, its caseload was approximately 5,294 – down from 5,916 in March 2010, 6,650 in January 2009, 8,290 in November 2007 and 9,640 in July 2006. It received an average of 310 claims per month in 2010-2011, slightly less than the previous year’s monthly average of 336. It completed 3,975 hearings in 2010-2011 – slightly more than the previous year’s 3,792. The average time to complete a claim in 2010-11 was approximately 20 months, an improvement over 2009-2010’s 24 months.
Complaints to the Ombudsman about the CICB have continued to fall, from 192 in 2006-07 to 39 in 2010-2011.