Canada: Parliament Fails to Promote Strong Measures to Stop Violence Against Indigenous Women and Girls
Sunday, April 13, 2014 8:10 AM

The Canadian Parliament has been criticized for failing to advocate for stronger measures to protect indigenous women and girls, even after a Parliamentary Committee conducted extensive investigations into the widespread trafficking, sexual assault and murder of indigenous women across Canada. The committee, the Canadian House of Commons Special Committee on Violence Against Indigenous Womenissued a report based on its investigations called, “Invisible Women: A Call to Action,” that contained 16 consensus recommendations primarily related to data collection and public awareness. Dissenting political parties and NGO’s such as Human Rights Watch have called on the Canadian Parliament to advocate for concrete actions to protect indigenous women from violence, including a fully independent investigation into the violence, a national action plan, and police accountability for physical and sexual abuse of native women.

The National Democratic Party stated that the official committee report “does not convey that there is a public safety emergency unfolding in every corner of the country and that a coordinated response is needed to address the high rates of violence against Indigenous women and girls.” Data collected by the Native Women’s Association of Canada indicated a sharp increase in the disappearance or death of Canadian indigenous women and girls after 2000. The Canadian Women’s Foundation has documented increased targeting of young indigenous girls by sex traffickers.

Compiled from: Canada: Parliament Panel Fails Indigenous Women, Human Rights Watch (March 7, 2014); Troian, Martha, The Indigenous Girls Being Pushed Into Canada’s Sex Trade Are Getting Younger And Younger, Vice (April 2, 2014).