Petition update

Update from Holly Jarrett: "Moving forward for Loretta"

Pascal Zamprelli
Westmount, Canada

Aug 28, 2014 — Hello everyone,

I wanted to take a moment to thank you all once again for supporting calls for a public inquiry into missing and murdered aboriginal women in Canada, which grow louder every day.
I also want to let you know about some of the next steps we’re planning for this campaign.

Since the murder of my cousin Loretta Saunders, I’ve made it my mission to make as many Canadians aware of the real issues that aboriginal women face every day, the same issues affect the entire nation. Now, with the support of over 300,000 people, we’re ready to demand answers from Stephen Harper. And we have a plan to convince him to meet with me.

Soon, I’ll be hitting the road with a film crew to investigate Loretta’s death and examine the many cases of missing Aboriginal women and to tell the stories of these women who can no longer tell their own. We’ll be traveling across the country, from Newfoundland and Labrador to British Columbia, to interview loved-ones, witnesses, and policy-makers and show Canadians all the circumstances that are affecting Aboriginal women every day, and contributing to this tragic epidemic. We’ll eventually get to Ottawa, where I hope the Prime Minister will agree to look at all the end evidence we’ve collected, and re-consider his opposition to a public inquiry.

My wish is that this documentary will give a fair perspective and an honest look at the socio-economic factors that affect Canadians as a whole, but also show what can happen when we start opening up about serious, very real issues faced by our entire society, real legitimate factors that are leaving our young women and mothers missing and dead. This documentary will show how these issues have evolved, and how all Canadians as a whole, alongside all of our Indigenous populations, and populations and policy makers from around the world come together and unite in supporting the need for a national inquiry into missing and murdered indigenous women in Canada.

Shortly after Loretta's death, I had a conversation with Dr. Darryl Leroux, Loretta’s thesis supervisor from St.Mary’s University where she was scheduled to graduate in May (her parents accepted her degree on her behalf, posthumously). I asked him about Loretta’s thesis and her work as his student, and very directly what he thought Loretta wanted to do with her thesis. Professor Leroux told me about what a gifted writer Loretta was, and that she was eloquent with her words concerning the depth of the issue she understood she was writing about, and how it personally affected not just her but every young Aboriginal woman like her. He knew she wanted to write a book, and that she wanted a national inquiry to happen.

This documentary will be in memory of Loretta and her spirit, to move forward for a better future for our children and youth, our women, our communities, and our country.

I believe Loretta was right and just in her belief in sharing her story to inspire the many more like us out there to stand up and speak out. She was prepared to share her story honestly. I hope to share these stories not from my own perspective, but as a part of a sisterhood, the same sisterhood Loretta belonged to,part of the brotherhood and sisterhood of nations that all call Canada home. I believe that through this perspective, Canadians will understand how this issue, that my cousin recognized so strongly, affects every one of us from coast to coast to coast.

I’ll write again soon with more details about this project. Thank you all for your continued support, it has sincerely served as an inspiration to me and our family.

With great sincerity,
Holly Jarrett

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