National Gathering to Honour Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women

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Indigenous women Elders The Eagle Feathers and Smudge along with tobacco at City Hall - Image taken with permission
The Eagle Feathers and Smudge along with tobacco at Thunder Bay City Hall - Image taken with permission

Sharon Johnson and Thunder Bay Aboriginal Liaison Ann Magiskan remembering the murdered and missing Anishinabe women
Sharon Johnson and Thunder Bay Aboriginal Liaison Ann Magiskan remembering the murdered and missing Anishinabe women

THUNDER BAY – A national gathering will honour the Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women (MMIW) of Canada at the Spirit of Our Sisters (SOS) Gathering. The national conference will take place from May 25 -27, 2015 in Enoch, Alberta.

“The vision behind this gathering is to bring families of victims, resource and service leaders, experts in various criminology and violence prevention fields, government departments, Indigenous leaders, and individuals who have an interest in coming together to raise awareness on the scope of this incredibly wretched but significant issue,” said Karen McCarthy, CEO of the Alberta Indigenous Entertainment Group and Spirit of Sisters (SOS) Conference Manager.

There is a call for all those community champions to convene at this gathering through ceremony to collaborate through a knowledge exchange of work being done across the country and share information of local, provincial and national efforts to raise awareness and concern for # MMIW. The Spirit of our Sisters steering committee members include; Former National Chief, Ovide Mercredi, Grand Chief of the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs (AMC) Derek Nepinak, Okimaw Wallace Fox of the Onion Lake Cree Nation, Josie Nepinak of the Awotaan Native Women’s Shelter and Assembly of First Nations, Regional Chief of Alberta, Cameron Alexis.

The focus is dedicated to the grassroots movement of Indigenous Women but there will also be opportunities for various stakeholders such as government and the private sector to share information and/or resources, and initiate discussion from different perspectives geared toward actions ensuring the current trends begin to see a decline of Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women in the future.

Karen McCarthy, CEO of the Alberta Indigenous Entertainment Group and Spirit of Our Sisters (SOS) Conference Manager states ”I am excited by the potential of this gathering to impact and create the type of transformation that will allow us; as Indigenous People, to remain focused on the advancement of the dignity, rights and equalities of Indigenous and non-Indigenous women in this country.”