“It’s an injustice, pure and simple – Aboriginal women continue to experience higher than average rates of sexualized violence in Canada”
Canadian Member of Parliament John Rafferty (Thunder Bay – Rainy River) delivered a statement in the House last week calling for cooperation to end violence against Aboriginal women. “Aboriginal women continue to experience higher than average rates of sexualized violence in Canada,” said Rafferty. “It’s an injustice, pure and simple.”
Outside the House, Rafferty praised the work of initiatives like Sisters in Spirit by the Native Women’s Association of Canada and reiterated his call for MPs to work with Aboriginal women to end this violence. “Aboriginal women’s groups are already working hard to raise awareness about sexualized and racialized violence and are putting forward solutions. Parliament must work in cooperation with these groups and support their work with action, not just rhetoric.”
Here is a transcript of Rafferty’s Member’s Statement:
Since 1992, October has been marked as Women’s History Month in Canada. It is a time to celebrate women’s achievements and the advancement of women’s equality. But it is also a time to reflect on how much more work there is to be done.
For many women in Canada, Aboriginal women in particular, equality is still far off.
This month, many of my colleagues have spoken passionately about justice for murdered and missing Aboriginal women and in support of the invaluable work of the Sisters in Spirit initiative.
Today, I would like to draw attention to the sad and ongoing history of sexual exploitation and sexualized violence perpetrated against Aboriginal women in Canada. This violence is a grave injustice and it must stop.
With our Fairness for Women action plan, New Democrats are working to end violence against Aboriginal women. I urge all members of this House to join with us in this goal.
We must work together with Aboriginal women and their communities and take meaningful action to end this violence, and to move forward for Aboriginal women’s equality.
* Action plan urged for murdered women