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Hamilton chapter calls for inquiry into murdered and missing Indigenous women

The Council of Canadians Hamilton chapter supports the call for a national inquiry on murdered and missing Indigenous women.

Kathie ClarkIn a letter to the editor published in the Hamilton Spectator, chapter activist Kathie Clark writes, “The Council of Canadians (canadians.org) is adding its voice to the call for a national inquiry on murdered and missing Indigenous women in Canada. …The families of murdered and missing Indigenous women will gather in Ottawa on Feb. 26. Some of them will then participate in a round table meeting with provincial premiers and Indigenous organizations on Feb. 27. I urge Hamiltonians to call their MPs and municipal councillors before then and ask them to support a national inquiry.”

The Council of Canadians has stated that an inquiry is needed to understand the root causes of this situation and to develop a national action plan. The federal New Democrats, Liberals and Greens agree that an inquiry is needed. The provincial premiers agree that a national inquiry is needed too. The United Nations special rapporteur on the rights of indigenous people and the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights have also called for a national inquiry. It’s only the Harper government that refuses to convene this inquiry.

And while it’s only a first step, the Globe and Mail reports this morning that, “Two federal cabinet ministers have agreed to meet with premiers and Indigenous leaders in Ottawa later this month to address the problem of murdered and missing Aboriginal women, ending speculation that the Conservative government might not partake in the national roundtable. Status of Women Minister Kellie Leitch and Aboriginal Affairs Minister Bernard Valcourt say they will attend the Feb. 27 roundtable, which some participants view as a first step toward a federal inquiry…”

We ask that you follow Kathie’s example and send a letter to the editor of your local newspaper too. A sample letter to the editor that you can personalize and send to your local newspaper is here. You could also call your Member of Parliament to express your support for a national inquiry and contact your city councillor about passing a resolution in support of an inquiry. Winnipeg, Saskatoon, Prince Albert and the Saskatchewan Urban Municipalities Association have all passed resolutions. The Winnipeg resolution can be read here.