Human Rights Groups seek action from Harper Gov’t

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Lakehead University Pow Wow 101
The smiles and the pride in their culture shine through. Many believe now, the 8th Fire is the time the Elders shared would happen is happening

Human Rights Groups ONWA Pow Wow against violence against women
Cool and blustery Thunder Bay weather didn’t keep people from remembering the lost, missing and murdered women at the ONWA Pow Wow in Thunder Bay in November 2012

THUNDER BAY – Human Rights Groups have the Harper Government under fire again. The Canadian Association of Statutory Human Rights passed a motion calling on the Prime Minister and his Conservative Government to work to develop a national plan of action to focus attention on the issue of violence against Indigenous women.

Human Rights Groups Push Harper Government

“We hear almost daily how Aboriginal women and girls continue to bear a persistent and disproportionate burden of violence,” commented President Barbara Hall. “I am pleased that the Ontario Human Rights Commission as a member of CASHRA, fully endorses CASHRA’s strong stand pushing the federal Government to urgently address this very disturbing situation.”

Marking International Women’s Day on March 8, Barbara Hall, President of the Canadian Association of Statutory Human Rights Agencies (CASHRA), today announced that the association has released a motion addressed to the Government of Canada.

The motion, unanimously passed by CASHRA members, urges the Government to work with Indigenous peoples’ organizations to develop and implement a national action plan. The plan would focus urgent attention on addressing and preventing the root causes of violence against Indigenous women and girls, including poverty and systemic discrimination. It further calls on the Government to establish an independent and inclusive inquiry into missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls in Canada.

According to Statistics Canada, Aboriginal women in Canada are seven times more likely to be murdered than non-Aboriginal women. The Native Women’s Association of Canada reports that, over the past 30 years, an alarming number of Aboriginal women and girls have gone missing or have been found murdered in communities across Canada.  Most of these cases remain unsolved.

CASHRA Members include:

Alberta Human Rights Commission

Canadian Human Rights Commission

Manitoba Human Rights Commission

New Brunswick Human Rights Commission

Newfoundland and Labrador Human Rights Commission

Northwest Territories Human Rights Commission

Nova Scotia Human Rights Commission

Ontario Human Rights Commission

Prince Edward Island Human Rights Commission

Québec – Commission des droits de la personne et des droits de la jeunesse

Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission

Yukon Human Rights Commission