HuffPost Canada closed in 2021 and this site is maintained as an online archive. If you have questions or concerns, please check our FAQ or contact email@example.com.
“Why are you guys doing this to women?”
Nearly 1,200 aboriginal women have been murdered or gone missing in Canada in the last 30 years.
For every act of violence against women, society pays a price in lost productivity, worse health outcomes, and, lost potential. Respect for all women and equality is essential. We need to put the same energy into denouncing the violence in Canada, as we do abroad.
The "Action Plan" tabled in the House of Commons this week does nothing new to actually "Stop the Violence" against indigenous women and girls. Unfortunately the Prime Minister sees the overwhelmingly disproportionate number of indigenous women and girls facing violence, who go missing or who are murdered, as nothing more than crimes that should be investigated by the police after they happen.
Prime Minister Harper's dismissal of the growing over-representation of Indigenous women and girls as victims of violence, homicide and persons who go missing as isolated crimes to be investigated by police illustrates just how out of touch he is. Moreover, the callous tone of his remarks yesterday, and failure to show any empathy for the families and loved ones of those who have been lost, shows a lack of compassion and leadership.
It is not surprising that the Prime Minister's former lawyer Benjamin Perrin wrote an article supporting Mr. Harper's stubborn refusal to call a national public inquiry into the ongoing tragedy of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls. However, his position is in stark contrast to the overwhelming consensus in Canada on the need for a national public inquiry. Grieving families, Indigenous leaders, all of the opposition parties, victims' advocate and every provincial and territorial premier have all urged the government to call a national inquiry. This should not be a partisan issue.