Ottawa, Manitoba commit $20M each to landfill search for remains of slain women

Ottawa, Manitoba commit $20M each to landfill search for remains of slain women
Supporters and family gather at a rally calling for a search of a landfill at the Manitoba Legislature in Winnipeg on Monday, Sept.18, 2023.

Families of two slain Indigenous women received word Friday that the federal and Manitoba governments are putting up $20 million each to help search a landfill for the women’s remains.

“I’m very grateful for these commitments going forward … and I pray that one day we will see justice,” Cambria Harris, whose mother Morgan Harris is one of four women alleged to have been killed by Jeremy Skibicki.

The government money is to go toward a search of the privately owned Prairie Green landfill north of Winnipeg, where the remains of Harris and Marcedes Myran are believed to be.

Skibicki is also charged with killing Rebecca Contois, whose partial remains were found in a different landfill, and an unidentified woman Indigenous leaders have named Buffalo Woman. Her remains have not been found.

Police in 2022 rejected the idea of a search, in part because of the potential danger from toxic materials and the sheer volume of material at the landfill.

The families and supporters commissioned two reports on the feasibility of a search, which has been estimated to cost $90 million if completed within a year.

The leader of the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs said she hopes the governments will fund whatever search efforts may be needed.

“We don’t want to go back and back again to ask that this work be complete,” Grand Chief Cathy Merrick said.


This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 22, 2024.

The Canadian PressThe Canadian Press

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