For years, communities have pinpointed the high number of missing and murdered Aboriginal women and girls in Canada. As of March 31, 2010 the Native Women’s Association of Canada has gathered information about 582 cases from across the country.
In British Columbia alone NWAC has gathered information about 160 cases, which accounts for almost a third of all cases in the database, and is substantially higher than any other province or territory in Canada. British Columbia also has among the highest rate of unsolved cases in Canada, with 49% of the cases unsolved. Most of the cases involve young women and girls under 31 years old, especially women aged 19-30, and of these, the vast majority were mothers. There is a responsibility to ensure that the children of these missing and murdered Aboriginal women remain connected to their communities and receive the necessary supports for healing. There is also a dire need to support family and community members who assume care for the children left behind.
Perhaps even more importantly, supports and resources for mothers must be understood as integral to any violence prevention strategy.
Please join us in a candlelight vigil to honor the missing and murdered Aboriginal women, to be held on October 4th at the Agassiz United Church. This service is nondenominational, and is open to all members of the community.