PRESS RELEASE – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE MAY 5, 2023
WINNIPEG – On May 5, 2023, Red Dress Day, the National Family and Survivors Circle (NFSC) calls for collaboration amongst all governments, agencies, organizations, industries, and all Canadians to address the genocide of Indigenous women, girls, and 2SLGBTQQIA+ people and to implement the 231 Calls for Justice in the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls Final Report and the 21 Calls for Justice in the Kepek-Quebec Supplementary Report. Collaboration must replace a siloed approach that creates barriers and slows progress towards the “transformed Canada” envisioned in the National Action Plan on MMIWG2S+, and the “transformative changes” promised in the Federal Pathway.
The first-ever Red Dress Day was held on May 5, 2010. It was inspired by the work of Métis artist Jaime Black on the REDress Project which included a series of red dresses to honour and symbolize the lost lives of Indigenous women at the hands of violence. On this day, marches, memorials, walks across Canada, and displays of red dresses in public spaces are held to show support for the lives of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls. The NFSC stands with grassroots activists, families of MMIWG2S+, survivors of gender-based violence, Indigenous women, girls, and 2SLGBTQQIA+ people, and allies, in their relentless commitment to bring awareness to, and demand action on, the MMIWG2S+ Canada-wide emergency.
This Red Dress Day is a day for all governments, agencies, organizations, industries, and all Canadians to be part of the solution in ending the genocide of Indigenous women, girls, and 2SLGBTQQIA+ people. Hilda Anderson-Pyrz, NFSC Chair, states, “A siloed approach and business as usual prevents progress. To achieve transformative outcomes, transformative actions must be taken.” She further states, “This includes true collaboration involving the direct, fully resourced, sustained, and equitable participation of families of MMIWG2S+, survivors of gender-based violence, and Indigenous women, girls, and 2SLGBTQQIA+ people as rights-holders.”
The NFSC encourages all governments, agencies, organizations, industries, and all Canadians to undertake the following to learn more about collaborative approaches:
- Reach out directly to families of MMIWG2S+, survivors of gender-based violence, and Indigenous women, girls, and 2SGLBTQQIA+, in your area.
- Read the NFSC contribution to the NAP, especially “The Four Pillars” which are guiding principles on how to action the inclusion of families and survivors. Reach out to the NFSC to discuss opportunities to collaborate.
- Read the 2021 MMIWG2S+ National Action Plan, especially “Overarching Vision and Guiding Principles” and “The Way Forward”. Reach out to contributing partners to discuss opportunities to collaborate.
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