1200 new women are calling us every year... Sometimes they call because they can’t sleep.... Sometimes they call us because it’s not safe for them to stay where they are... Sometimes they call us because they need a bus ticket or a flight... Many times they will call us because they want to protect other women...
We recognize the many useful recommendations made by the commissioners of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls and call on all levels of government to promptly and diligently implement them in order to protect Indigenous women from men’s violence and get them closer to safety and freedom.
We do not accept murder, rape, wife battering and incest as inevitable and we do not accept prostitution as inevitable.
These are all acts done by men to women in patriarchal world where the relationship between men and women are based on domination and subordination. We do not accept that this kind of relationships between men and women are inevitable.
Learning that Indigenous women in pre-colonial Canada were treated in their nations with respect and honor, gives us hope. It reinforces our refusal to accept women’s oppression as inevitable. Knowing that fairly recently in human history, women had social and spiritual roles that were regarded as valuable as those men had, makes our fight for liberation not only possible, but tangible.
We have asserted and won in law at least that privacy is not just an individual victim’s right but a constitutional Charter right which is fundamental to women’s equality — to have access to a safe space where you can tell your experience of male violence is at the very core of every rape crisis centre’s existence.
A Guaranteed Livable Income must be set high enough to meet adequate standards of living. It should provide all basic necessities such as a nutritious diet, safe adequate housing, transportation, and allow for discretionary spending to enhance full participation in community life.
The crisis of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls in Canada is both a national tragedy and a national shame. The book Forever Loved: Exposing the Hidden Crisis of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls in Canada includes voices from the academic realms and grassroots and front-lines to speak on what has been identified by both the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights and the United Nations as a grave violation of the basic human rights of Aboriginal women and girls
By Summer Rain Bentham, Hilla Kerner, and Lisa Steacy