Victoria Integrated Court

Location: Victoria, BC
First sitting: March 16, 2010
Contact to participate: Talk to your lawyer or Duty Counsel about whether you qualify for Victoria Integrated Court. They can speak to the prosecutor for you.

Specialized work

  • VIC deals primarily with people who are struggling with addiction, cognitive impairments, living with mental health issues, and/or experiencing homelessness.
  • It conducts bail and sentencing hearings with follow-up support and enforcement for people who wish to plead guilty to criminal offences and are supported by an integrated team delivering emergency and health services. People who plead not guilty are tried in the regular court system.
  • Participation in VIC is voluntary. Everyone appearing in VIC must consent to attend and participate in VIC and must be connected to a community support team. The prosecutor must also agree to their participation in VIC.


  • Judges sit in VIC for a year or longer to provide continuity. Prosecutors (called "Crown counsel") are also assigned to VIC for extended periods.
  • When an offender pleads guilty, the judge is told about housing, medical, and other issues affecting them. The lawyers may recommend terms for a sentencing order designed to help a team support and supervise the offender.
  • Sentences typically imposed include support and supervision in the community as part of a probation order.
  • Judges in VIC often order community service as part of a sentence. While doing their community service, offenders (called "clients" in VIC) have helped to create a mural and a community garden where they can learn gardening skills, grow their own produce, and earn a share in any profits from produce sold.
  • Sentences may also include requirements to attend court for “reviews” where the judge hears reports on a client’s progress. The judge may make appropriate changes to the sentence at a review.
  • When a client receives a jail sentence, VIC provides “pre-release planning”. The client appears in court before their release from jail to have the conditions of their probation order reviewed and ensure necessary supports are in place. The judge may change the order to specify the housing and rehabilitation services that have been arranged for the client since they were imprisoned.

Serenity Farm, the therapeutic garden where VIC clients perform community work service, learn horticulture skills, and earn stipends selling produce they grow


In 2010 a task force in Victoria recommended an integrated approach to address street crime. Police, health professionals, social workers, and Community Corrections formed integrated teams to deliver emergency and health services to homeless, mentally disordered, and addicted people who were repeatedly committing criminal offences. VIC was established as part of this integrated approach.


VIC’s goals are:

  • to improve access to health, social, and economic services for this group of chronic offenders
  • to improve public safety
  • to hold offenders accountable for their actions in a timely manner.

Community partners

  • All VIC clients are supported by a team that may include community outreach workers, social workers, probation officers, and police. The teams include:
    • four Assertive Community Treatment (“ACT”) teams
    • Community Living British Columbia (“CLBC”) and agencies helping its clients
    • two Intensive Case Management teams
    • one Youth Intensive Case Management team (“YICMT”).
  • People ordered to attend the New Roads Therapeutic Recovery Community (‘New Roads TRC”) as part of their bail or sentencing conditions are also supervised in VIC. This group includes people from outside Victoria.
  • Representatives of the teams and New Roads TRC meet regularly with the VIC prosecutor and defence lawyers to discuss cases and plan support and supervision for clients.

More information

Retired judge Ernie Quantz honoured for his work in VIC eNews
Saving lives, one life at a time eNews
Victoria's Integrated Court celebrates 5th birthday and positive results eNews
Lights... action … camera... eNews
Victoria Integrated Court engages in community consultations eNews
Victoria Integrated Court Report 2011

Archived reports