Sol Mamakwa, Ontario NDP critic for Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation, and Suze Morrison, Ontario NDP critic for Women’s Issues, made the following statement following Monday’s release of the final report of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Women and Girls Commission (MMIWG).
“This morning the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls presented their final report. We would like to thank and honour the thousands of people who came forward to share their truth telling stories with the commission.
It was not easy for them to speak about their sisters, mothers and friends who were murdered, or who disappeared and never came home. We thank you all for your advocacy.
What was heard over and over again is that Indigenous women and girls have been subject to colonial violence for generations. The policies of colonization and genocide that were imposed on our people are treated as normal.
Over and over again, families and survivors shared their stories of great pain and suffering.
Families turned to the system for help in achieving justice for their relatives. And there was no help.
We ask everyone to hear the calls to justice and honour them.
We call on our colleagues, and all Ontarians to speak out against racism, misogyny and hold yourselves to account. Learn about the true history of Canada and Ontario.
It’s not enough to accept the report from the inquiry and say you will listen. Indigenous people expect action and real systemic change.
We call on Doug Ford to take the inquiry’s calls to action for all governments, seriously. Ford should adopt the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples in this province. He should provide funding for prevention programs to counter violence against Indigenous women and girls, and recognize Indigenous languages by reinstating the Indigenous Culture Fund which provided cultural development, including language education.
And finally, Ford should allow all Ontarians to learn about Indigenous history, and the true history of Canada, by having an Indigenous curriculum as part of core studies in Ontario schools.
We must work on these steps together. Real healing can only happen together.”
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