June 15th, 2024

AFN national chief blasts governments’ inaction on fifth anniversary of MMIWG report

By The Canadian Press on June 3, 2024.

National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations Cindy Woodhouse Nepinak speaks during a news conference on Parliament Hill, in Ottawa, Monday, June 3, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld

OTTAWA – On the fifth anniversary of a national inquiry’s report into missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls, the national chief of the Assembly of First Nations is blasting all levels of government for what she calls slow progress to stop the crisis.

Only two of the more than 150 calls to action focused on First Nations people have been implemented since 2019, Cindy Woodhouse Nepinak says.

That’s despite constant calls from advocates for more funding from all levels of government for Indigenous housing, justice and programs for LGBTQ peoples that they say would keep women and girls safer.

The 2019 inquiry concluded Indigenous women are 12 times more likely to go missing or murdered than their non-Indigenous counterparts, and brought forward a total of 231 calls to action to help curb the epidemic.

Woodhouse says governments’ inaction is a failure that is “not acceptable to our people,” and says she hopes it’s not acceptable to Canadians either.

Woodhouse is calling on governments and their agencies to bring forward meaningful change based on justice and respect for human rights, with survivors and their families in mind.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 3, 2024.

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