Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls National Inquiry

Maintaining a gendered lens to the MMIW is not about excluding men. It is about giving voice and presence to those who have consistently been discriminated against based on their gender. It is about making seen those who have been made to disappear.  ~Tara Williamson

National Inquiry

KAIROS welcomed the federal government’s decision to collaborate with Indigenous peoples on an inquiry into missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls in Canada. An inquiry was urgently needed to raise awareness and understanding of the sexist and racist attitudes and beliefs that are at the root of the violence against Indigenous women in Canada. There is overwhelming evidence that this violence is in part an intergenerational impact of the residential schools system.

We were encouraged that this process included families of victims, as too often the families’ voices are not heard.

KAIROS worked with their network, partners and the Canadian government trying to ensure that the inquiry was rooted in respectful and genuine collaboration and that it addressed the systemic causes of this ongoing violence.

KAIROS sees this commitment in the context of our ongoing work on truth and reconciliation in Canada, and we remain hopeful this inquiry will be the last.

At the same time, we had significant concerns that the Inquiry would have difficulty being effective due to substantial gaps in the terms of reference. This includes insufficient scrutiny of law enforcement, a lack of supports to enable broad participation of family members, potential barriers to accessing important documents and jurisdictional barriers to working with the provinces and territories, among others.

The final report was released on June 3, 2019 and the National Inquiry officially concluded on June 30, 2019.

There were 2386 participants in the truth gathering process:

  • 1484 family members and survivors provided testimony
  • 819 individuals shared through artistic expressions
  • 83 experts, knowledge-keepers and officials provided testimony

There were 15 community hearings and 9 knowledge keeper, expert and institutional hearings.

Chief Commissioner

The Honourable Marion Buller, Provincial Court Judge, British Columbia, Mistawasis First Nation, Saskatchewan

  • Michèle Audette, Former President of Femmes autochtones du Québec (Québec Native Women’s Association), Mani Utenam, Québec
  • Qajaq Robinson, Associate, Borden Ladner Gervais LLP, Iqaluit, Nunavut
  • Brian Eyolfson, Acting Deputy Director, Ministry of Aboriginal Affairs, Legal Services, Couchiching First Nation, Ontario

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