Government of Canada Launches Commemoration Fund for Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls
New Commemoration Fund to support Indigenous families and communities to honour the lives and legacies of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls and LGBTQ2S individuals.
February 2, 2019 – Vancouver, British Columbia – Department for Women and Gender Equality
No relationship is more important to Canada than the relationship with Indigenous peoples. We cannot move forward and eliminate gender-based violence without acknowledging the past.
That’s why today, the Honourable Maryam Monsef, Minister for Women and Gender Equality, announced that the Government of Canada is launching the Commemoration Fund for Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls, including LGTBQ2S individuals. Public commemoration is a powerful way to help honour truths, support healing, create awareness, and advance reconciliation.
The Commemoration Fund responds to recommendations from the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls’ Interim Report. In its Interim Report, the National Inquiry highlighted the need to fund commemoration activities to help honour the lives and legacies of Indigenous women and girls and LGBTQ2S individuals.
The Government of Canada is investing $10 million over two years, which will provide funding for Indigenous governments and organizations, including Indigenous women’s organizations and Two-Spirit organizations, to work with families and communities to develop and implement commemorative initiatives across the country. The activities and events that the Commemoration Fund will support will contribute to healing and help increase public awareness, and help honour missing and murdered Indigenous women, girls and LGBTQ2S individuals.
The Department for Women and Gender Equality (formerly Status of Women Canada) has a longstanding relationship with Indigenous organizations and will continue to work with First Nations, Inuit and Métis people across Canada to make meaningful progress to address and eliminate gender-based violence.
Organizations can find more information and submit an application to the Call for Proposals by visiting women.gc.ca. The deadline to submit is March 28, 2019 at 11:59 a.m. (noon) Pacific Standard Time.
“Ending violence against Indigenous women, girls and LGBTQ2S individuals is everyone’s responsibility – including all levels of government, police, the justice system, civil society and other partners. Our government is listening to survivors and families who have told us that in order to move forward meaningfully, we must remember and help honour those who are missing and whose lives have been lost. The Commemoration Fund ensures that we have the means to do so.”
The Honourable Maryam Monsef, P.C., M.P.
Minister for Women and Gender Equality
“Families of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls fought for decades to ensure their daughters, sisters, mothers, and aunties are not forgotten and to have this on-going national tragedy properly investigated. Our government responded by calling the National Inquiry and by acting on the root causes: reforming child and family services, investments in social housing and shelters, and reviewing policing standards and practices. The Commemoration Fund responds to the Commission’s Interim Report and helps families and survivors honour their loved ones and promote the healing which is so important.”
The Honourable Carolyn Bennett, M.D., P.C., M.P.
Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations
- The work of the Commemoration Fund will complement the other commemoration work already underway across the country.
- In 2016, the Government of Canada dedicated $53.8 million to establish the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls, with a two year mandate from September 1, 2016 to December 31, 2018, to complete its important work.
- The National Inquiry released an interim report with recommendations on November 1, 2017.
- The Government of Canada announced on June 5, 2018, that the Commission would be extended. Its final report is now due to be released by April 30, 2019 instead of the initial date of November 1, 2018.
- While Indigenous women make up only 4% of Canada’s female population, 16% of all women murdered in Canada between 1980 and 2012 were Indigenous (Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada).
Office of the Minister for Women and Gender Equality
Department for Women and Gender Equality