Many people fear becoming victims of violent crime and, though it is statistically rare, it does happen. In 2012 (the last year for which Canada-wide data is available) there were 377,000 violent criminal code violations. Violent crime in Canada is a reality that you cannot avoid. How can you protect yourself?

  • In 2014, there were just over 62,200 reports of missing persons.
    • Web apps can help. Did you know that there are apps out there such as Family Locator, bSafe and others that will let you track the movements of your friends and relatives? Some can also send out a distress message if you’re in trouble.
  • In 2012, about 25,360 Canadians were victims of a robbery.
    • If you have an encounter, keep your palms facing forward about shoulder height. This is a gesture that is perceived as calming and even one of surrender. However, if things become actively aggressive – your hands are already in a defensive position between you and the attacker.
  • Over 160,000 cases of breaking and entering were reported and investigated (2012).
    • Find out the relevant crime statistics in your community. Consider Intrusion detection systems, high-grade security door and window locks, security cameras with motion detectors. Have a plan in place for everyone in the household.
  • Assaults numbered just over 214, 900 (2012).
    • Secret codes work. Set up a code word or phrase to alert a companion or an emergency contact person. Sending it is a signal that you are in distress. For example: “I’m okay” = “I’m in trouble.”
  • Sexual assaults numbered over 20,000 (2012)
    • Did you know that you are always armed? A purse, brief case, scarf, loose change or an umbrella can all distract and delay an attacker. Keys used to jab or slash can give you the element of surprise and, possibly, enough time to run to safety.