The justice system can be complicated and unfamiliar but knowing what to expect can help. We can help you understand and engage with the justice system, answer any questions you have, and be there for you if you want someone to listen.
We can support you with:
You can call us or visit our How we can help page to find out more about who we are, how we can help you and how to access our support.
If you or others have been injured, see a doctor, go to a hospital emergency department or call an ambulance on 111 regardless of whether you decide to report the incident or not.
A professional medical assessment can help your recovery and ensure physical safety.
Depending on the incident, consider having the doctor prepare a medical report that can be shared with police, if you are comfortable doing that.
For many, a ceremonial blessing of the site where a person has died is an essential part of processing the loss. It acknowledges of the spiritual impact of the tragedy and protects and guides the spirit of the deceased. It respects and honours the dignity of the deceased person, their family, whānau, and community.
For Māori, it can include lifting of the tapu on the site and karakia. Other cultural and faith groups have their own unique blessing ceremonies. Some family or whānau members may choose to visit the scene and be part of a blessing ceremony and others may not. They may prefer to hold a private blessing or open it to whomever would like to come, including from the community.
If you are an immediate family or whānau member wishing to organise a blessing for the site, you could contact your kaumātua, local marae, church or faith centre, the police officer who has been working with you, a Police Iwi Liaison Officer, or speak to a Support Worker.
If you don't personally know the family or whānau but witnessed or discovered the incident, you can speak to a Support Worker if you'd like to attend a blessing, provided it is open to the public and the family or whānau are comfortable with that.
Manaaki Tāngata | Victim Support
Call us 24/7 on 0800 842 846 to be connected to a Support Worker for assistance.
Support through the criminal justice system
Look in this directory to find a New Zealand lawyer
Support is here for you when things get tough. You don't have to face it alone. Reach out to these confidential and non-judgmental services to discuss your situation and get the help you need.
After experiencing or witnessing a crime or traumatic event, you may feel unsafe and lose your sense of security or trust. It's important to prioritise your safety to minimise any harm and protect yourself from any risks.
From creating a safety plan, to protecting your home or safeguarding your personal information, there are steps you can take to enhance your safety and support you to move forward in your recovery.
If you have experienced a crime or traumatic event, more information and resources to support your particular circumstances can be found on our Crime and traumatic events pages.
You may be scared to report a crime for fear of not being believed or taken seriously. Sometimes victims feel that they can’t tell anyone about what happened to them, but it helps when crimes are reported. Police take threats to your security seriously, and want victims to be safe and feel safe.
Some incidents are not a one-off and providing police with information about what happened can help them find the perpetrators and prevent this happening to others.
The more information police are given, the more effectively they can tackle crime and support safer communities. Remember that when a crime occurs, the offender is responsible, not you.
Whether or not you choose to report, you are entitled to free support from Manaaki Tāngata | Victim Support. We can support you to report a crime but if you choose not to, we are still here for you.
If you’ve been the victim of a crime or traumatic event that has left you feeling unsafe, there are some precautions you can take to help you gain your confidence back.
When you’re going out
When you’re using a car
When you’re at home
Women’s Refuge’s Whānau Protect Programme provides a free national service to help victims of family violence and harm to stay safely in their homes. This is a service for those victims at very high risk (further victimisation from the offender that will likely result in serious physical injury or death) and some key criteria must be met.
For those that meet the criteria, there is support with practical measures like installing security lights, providing monitored personal panic alarms, replacing locks and fixing broken windows, and connecting them with other support agencies.
To find out if you might be eligible or to submit an application for this service, please visit the Women’s Refuge Whānau Protect Programme page.
Everyone deserves to feel safe in their relationships. If you are facing family violence and harm, consider making a safety plan. This is a plan of future actions you can take to keep you and your family and whānau members safe if you feel threatened or are in immediate danger.
It’s important you have a safe place to go and trusted people to be around when you need it.
Everyone’s situation is different but support can help; Manaaki Tāngata | Victim Support and other local support services can help you prepare an individual plan that works for you and your family or whānau.
Wellington Women's Refuge Safety planning provides a supportive list of things to consider if you prepare to leave and how to take care of your emotional safety during this challenging time.
If you are a member of the Rainbow community considering leaving a family violence and harm situation, see the Hohou Te Rongo Kahukura Safety Planning resource.
If you have left an abusive relationship you may want to consider having an unlisted phone number and also applying to go on the unpublished electoral roll. This means your address and details will not be publicly available.
Taking simple steps to stay safe online is important to protect yourself from harm and avoid any negative consequences of online harassment, exposure to harmful content or online scams or fraud.
Anyone can find themselves the victim of a cybercrime. There are some steps you can take to mimise the risk of it happening again and to keep yourself safe overall.
If you've been affected by cybercrime, don't be afraid to use and engage with technology, but be cautious about how to stay safe on your devices.
If you have serious concerns that someone can access your computer and it's a safety risk for you, consider using a library, workplace, or friend's computer.
When you are browsing the internet, it will save websites you have visited.
If you need to keep your browser history and visits to a website hidden, there are things you can do:
Please be aware that wiping out all your browsing history might raise suspicion for someone tracking you. Consider deleting select items only to avoid it looking suspicious.
If you're in a family harm situation and the person harming you can access your email, it may be a serious risk to you.
To protect yourself, make a strong, difficult-to-guess password. Remember to log out after using your email and never save your password.
If you are sent threatening emails, you may want to ask a trusted family or whānau member, or a friend to print them for you and keep them safe in case you need to use them as proof if police become involved.
Mobile phones can be an easy target for theft but also for those experiencing family harm and harassment.
If your mobile phone has been stolen or someone has access to it, it may mean they have access to your personal information, browser history or even banking information.
CERT NZ has put together some simple steps you can take to keep this information on your phone secure.
Mobile or phone harassment involves unwanted voicemails, calls, messaging, video, or photo messages that cause you to feel harassed, threatened, embarrassed, or victimized.
Netsafe's mobile phone harassment and abuse information can guide you on how to protect yourself and block a phone number.
It’s important for everyone to feel safe in their own home. You can take some simple security measures so that you can minimise risk to being burgled and also for you to feel more comfortable again, especially if you have experienced a home burglary, invasion or property damage.
Inside your home
Outside your home
When you're away from your home for a period of time
A safer community helps protect everyone who lives and works in it. Knowing who your neighbours are or having people nearby that you can trust can create a stronger and more resilient community.
If a crime has been committed in the community, or you have been the victim of a crime, your neighbours may have witnessed something or someone suspicious that could assist police with their investigation. Working together ensures a better chance at everyone’s safety and the safety of the businesses around them too.
There are a number of local organisations such as Neighbourhood Support, Māori Wardens and Community Patrol New Zealand (CPNZ) that work hard to keep our communities safe. Connecting with them or simply knowing they have an active and positive presence in your community can help you to begin to feel secure again.
New Zealand Police also have specialist liaison officers working in communities around the country. They team up with communities to make it easier for them to use police services, pass on community worries to the Police, and assist in tackling and stopping crimes in communities. They can listen to your concerns and work with the Police to prevent victimisations and make your community safer.