Long-time government policies and deeply rooted social beliefs have put Canada’s Indigenous women, girls, and Two Spirit/LGBTQ+ people at greater risk of violence.
USW helped in the call for a National inquiry, because an injury to one is an injury to all, and because Steelworkers and our family members are among the missing and murdered.
What Steelworkers can do
Steelworkers and all Canadians can support these “Calls for Justice” from the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls:
- Speak out against violence against Indigenous women, girls and Two Spirit/ LGBTQ+ peoples.
- Learn the true history of Canada and Indigenous history. Celebrate Indigenous Peoples’ history, cultures, pride, and diversity. Acknowledge the land you live on and its importance to local Indigenous communities, both historically and today.
- Protect, support and promote the safety of women, girls, and Two Spirit/LGBTQ+ people by respecting them and their right to determine their own solutions.
- Hold all governments accountable to implement the Calls for Justice set out in the Final Report, such as:
- Immediately ensure that Indigenous peoples have access to safe housing, clean drinking water, and adequate food.
- Eliminate discriminatory provisions from the Indian Act that have disconnected women from their communities and ended their access to rights and benefits.
- Provide accessible healing programs and support for all children of missing and murdered Indigenous women, girls, and Two Spirit/LGBTQ+ people and their family members.
- Implement a National Action Plan to address violence against Indigenous women, girls and Two Spirit/LGBTQ+ people which would include equitable access to basic rights such as employment, housing, and education.
- Recognize Indigenous jurisdiction over child welfare, and stop removing children from their families on the basis of poverty or cultural bias.
- Ensure that the children of murdered or missing Indigenous women, girls, and Two Spirit/LGBTQ+ people can be raised by family members in their communities.
- Ensure that mining and development projects take into account the safety and security of Indigenous women, girls and Two Spirit/LGBTQ+ people, as well as their equitable benefit from development.