Sisters In Spirit

October 4th is a day where we honour the lives of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls. Indigenous women face life-threatening, gender-based violence and disproportionately experience violent crimes because of hatred and racism.

In 2005, the Native Women’s Association of Canada (NWAC) secured funding for Sisters in Spirit, a research, education and policy initiative led by Aboriginal women. The objective was to raise awareness about the high rates of violence against Aboriginal women and to investigate root causes, trends and circumstances. Over a 5 year period, NWAC recorded information about 582 missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls across Canada in the Sisters In Spirit database. In 2013, the Commissioner of the RCMP initiated an RCMP led study. RCMP confirmed that there are 1,181 police recorded incidents of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls across the country over the past 30 years. Recent months have seen the number revised upwards, with one government minister estimating that as many as 4,000 Indigenous women had gone missing or been murdered during the three-decade period.