Northwest Advocate hopes National Inquiry Into Missing And Murdered Indigenous Women And Girls Leads to Positive Change

Hillary Johnson
06/03/2019

The inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls much-anticipated report was released in Gatineau, Quebec, Tuesday, and it drew plenty of attention in Northwestern British Columbia.

Community Advocate Wanda Good has a personal involvement as her cousins -- Alberta Williams and Lana Derrick -- went missing in 1989 and 1995. Both cases remain unsolved.

"It's a huge undertaking to do a major overhaul of the justice system of Canada. I'm hopeful just the awareness of the issue of MMIW and a change in policy on how to respond to indigenous women when they enter into the justice system, is a good first step I think," said Good.

Good is hopeful for change within all aspects of the government and society.

"One that really stood out for me was making a collaborative effort of all governments within the programs and services that are provided to all people, not just first nations people, that break down the silos I think that are barriers for indigenous people and for all peoples that enter into these systems and  I think that's a great first step for change."

CFTK-TV Open Connection host Robert  Pictou was among the people who testified before the commission during its hearings -- and explained his experience with his family's testimony,  25 years after his sister's disappearance in April 1993.

"When our family was able to testify, finally, in my home town of Membertou, it really made it heartfelt, and I really understood why it's so important for families, and actually the commissioners to hear, first hand, how families are impacted when someone goes missing."

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The Coalition on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls and 2 spirit people of British Columbia maintain that now the affected families have shared their stories, its time to act and they call on the Federal and Provincial governments to take immediate action in implementing the recommendations of this report.

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