Families of those women concerned inquiry will get it right.
After years of delay, the federal government announced a national inquiry into missing and murdered indigenous women.
Today details on who will lead it, and what they will be asked to do
And as Mary Griffin tell us, the B.C. families of those women are speaking out, they want to make sure the inquiry gets it right.
“My auntie Belinda has been missing since 1978.
My cousin Tanya Hollick went missing in 1996.
Her DNA was later found on Robert Pickton’s farm.”
Lorelei Williams is emotional as she speaks of her family members.
She is one of many from across the country as they learn details on the national inquiry into the the more than 1200 missing or murdered indigenous women.
BC Provincial Justice Marion Buller will head the inquiry.
Over the next two years, the commissioners will work to end the disproportionate violence faced by indigenous women and girls.
But some are already questioning whether the inquiry has the mandate.
Myrna Cranmer organizes the annual Memorial March in Vancouver’s downtown eastside.
“No-one is going to care because we are going to focusing on a national inquiry that is costing us 53 million dollars and 86 cents.
We know why our women are being killed.
We know why our women are going missing.
So we’re going to spend the next couple of years talking about it.”
At the Victoria offices of the BC Association of Aboriginal Friendship Centres, Leslie Varley hopes the inquiry results in real change.
“I’m hoping for something really, that is going to expose all of Canada.
Not just how indigenous women are treated.
But how Canada has allowed systemic racism and oppression to endure over these last hundred years.”
The government budgeted more than 53 million dollars for the inquiry.
The commissioners can review police practices but not re-open old cases.
That is not what Lorelei Williams is expecting.
“The terms of reference has to explicitly include policing and police accountability.
This is very important to me because of what happened to my family.”
The inquiry begins its two year mandate in September.