September 22, 2022

As Gender Equality Week draws to a close, the National Family and Survivors Circle (NFSC) urges everyone to better understand the intersection of race- and gender-based inequities faced by Indigenous women, girls, and 2SLGBTQQIA+ people, and to take action to ensure equality and justice for all.

“Indigenous women make up only approximately 5% of women in Canada, but represent almost one-quarter of all women homicide victims between 2015 and 2020,” said NFSC Chair, Hilda Anderson-Pyrz. “In addition, over 60% experience either physical or sexual assault in their lifetime, and over 32% live in poverty compared to 13% of non-Indigenous people. Indigenous women are over-policed and under-protected.”

These systemic barriers are overwhelmingly apparent. Every Canadian has a responsibility to ensure the safety and protection of Indigenous women, girls and 2SLGBTQQIA+ people. Call for Justice 15.8 calls on all Canadians to help hold all governments accountable to act on the 231 Calls for Justice, and to implement them according to the important principles that were set out in the Final Report of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls.

We can take action by:

  1. Demanding accountability from governments (Call for Justice 15.8)
    Join the NFSC in advocating for the implementation of Call for Justice 1.7, which calls on federal, provincial, and territorial governments, in partnership with Indigenous Peoples, to establish an independent National Indigenous and Human Rights Ombudsperson and a National Indigenous and Human Rights Tribunal
  2. Decolonizing by learning the true history of Canada and Indigenous history in your local area (Call for Justice 15.2)
    Learn about and celebrate Indigenous Peoples’ history, cultures, pride, and diversity, acknowledging the land you live on and its importance to local Indigenous communities, both historically and today.
  3. Confronting and speaking out against racism, sexism, homophobia, and transphobia (Call for Justice 15.5)
    Call out discrimination and ignorance, and teach others to do the same, wherever it occurs: in your home, in your workplace, or in social settings.

We all have a responsibility to build a future free from systemic barriers.

We understand that this subject matter is difficult for many people in our community. If you require immediate support, please contact the national, independent toll free 24/7 support line at 1-844-413-6649 to speak to a counsellor. The service is available in English, French, Cree, Anishnaabemowin (Ojibway), and Inuktitut.

About the National Family and Survivors Circle (NFSC)

The NFSC comprises First Nations, Inuit, and Métis women from diverse backgrounds who use their lived expertise to advocate for centering the voices of families of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls, survivors of gender-based violence, and 2SLGBTQQIA+ people, and made significant contributions to the 2021 National Action Plan.

Source(s) referenced: 

231 Calls for Justice

For more information and to book interviews, please contact:

Click here to download this statement as a PDF.