Canada has obligations under international human rights law.
- Member of Parliament Simcoe North
- Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada
Robert Douglas Nicholson
- Member of Parliament Calgary Southwest
- Leader, Conservative Party of Canada / Chef, Parti Conservateur du Canada
February 14th, 2013
To Prime Minister Stephen Harper,
Members of Parliament
Why: Canada has obligations under international human rights law.
What: Support a National Inquiry into missing and murdered Aboriginal women & girls.
• Whereas in December 2011 the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women decided to conduct an inquiry into the murders and disappearances of Aboriginal women and girls across Canada;
• Whereas the Government of Canada on January 18th, 2012 declared to the UNITED NATIONS PERMANENT FORUM ON INDIGENOUS ISSUES in New York that it “is deeply concerned about the disturbingly high number of missing and murdered Aboriginal women and girls” and is “supportive of intensive efforts to address violence against women and girls, including those from Indigenous communities”;
• Whereas Canada has not lived up to its obligations under international human rights law to prevent, investigate and remedy violence against Aboriginal women and girls;
• Whereas on February 13th, 2013 the internationally respected organization, Human Rights Watch released a report on the abuse of Aboriginal women in Canada, finding
- that the core issue of the lack of security prevents Indigenous women and girls from filing complaints of police abuse;
- that aboriginal women and girls are often too traumatized to co-operate with police;
- that victims fear police reprisal if accusing RCMP officers of abusing Aboriginal women and girls in northern B.C., including allegations of rape;
- that the alleged incidents were uncovered as part of a broader investigation into charges of systemic neglect of missing and murdered aboriginal women along B.C.’s Highway 16, nicknamed the “Highway of Tears”;
I call on the Canadian government
a) to set up a national commission of inquiry into the murders and disappearances of Indigenous women and girls before the end of 2013, which should also examine "incidents of serious police misconduct ..." and which would fully involve the affected Indigenous communities at every stage of the process,
b) to establish independent civilian investigations of reported incidents of serious police misconduct, including incidents of rape and other sexual assault."
Press Release Ottawa, ON (December 13, 2011) – UN Will Conduct Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Aboriginal Women in Canada. Downloaded from: http://www.nwac.ca/media/release/13-12-11
SUBMISSION BY CANADA INTERNATIONAL EXPERT GROUP MEETING ON “COMBATING VIOLENCE AGAINST INDIGENOUS WOMEN AND GIRLS: ARTICLE 22 OF THE UNITED NATIONS DECLARATION ON THE RIGHTS OF INDIGENOUS PEOPLES”, UNITED NATIONS PERMANENT FORUM ON INDIGENOUS ISSUES. New York, January 18th, 2012. Downloaded from http://www.un.org/esa/socdev/unpfii/documents/EGM12_Canada_en.pdf
Those Who Take Us Away: Abusive Policing and Failures in Protection of Indigenous Women and Girls in Northern British Columbia, Canada. Downloaded from http://www.hrw.org/sites/default/files/reports/canada0213webwcover.pdf
Harper brushes off calls for inquiry into violence against aboriginal women: http://www.canada.com/Harper+brushes+calls+inquiry+into+violence+against+aboriginal+women/7961147/story.html#ixzz2L7zWQT3t
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