The Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, today issued the following statement to mark four years since the publication of the final report of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls:
“Four years ago today, the sombre, painful, and heartbreaking realities endured by Indigenous women, girls, and 2SLGBTQI+ people in Canada were brought to light once again when the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls unveiled its conclusive findings in its final report. On this day, we honour those who lost their lives, those who continue to experience violence, and the survivors and their families who bravely stepped forward to share their truths. Today, we also recommit ourselves to continue taking action to end violence against Indigenous women, girls, and 2SLGBTQI+ people.
“The National Inquiry confirmed a reality that many Indigenous people already knew: that our system is failing them. The report called for sweeping legal and social changes, across governments and in communities, to address the root causes and help stop the violence that continues to affect Indigenous communities today.
“In the past year alone, we have taken significant action, as part of our implementation of the National Action Plan and the Federal Pathway, and in partnership with Indigenous Peoples. We appointed Jennifer Moore Rattray, a member of the Peepeekisis First Nation in Saskatchewan and the former Executive Director of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls, as Ministerial Special Representative to the Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations earlier this year. In this role, Ms. Rattray will provide recommendations on the establishment of an Indigenous and Human Rights Ombudsperson, in part to address Call for Justice 1.7 of the final report.
“Earlier this week, we also announced new and sustainable ongoing funding to help Indigenous families access information about their missing and murdered loved ones and enhance services and supports for Indigenous victims and survivors of crime. And Budget 2023 included new funding to centre survivors in our approach, create an oversight mechanism to monitor and report on the progress of implementation, and bring together all levels of government, including to work toward launching a ‘Red Dress Alert’ to notify the public when someone goes missing.
“Today, we reaffirm our unwavering commitment to working with survivors, families, communities, provinces, and territories as we strive to address and overcome the heartbreaking crisis of missing and murdered Indigenous women, girls, and 2SLGBTQI+ people in Canada. By prioritizing the needs of families and survivors, promoting transparency, and fostering accountability, we honour those we have tragically lost, support those who are healing, and protect current and future generations against unjustifiable acts of violence.”
If you or someone you know has been affected by the tragedy of missing and murdered women, girls, and 2SLGBTQI+ people, and needs immediate emotional assistance, please call 1-844-413-6649. You can also access mental health support services such as mental health counselling, community-based emotional support and cultural services, and assistance with travel costs to see Elders and traditional healers away from home.