Annual March for Missing and Murdered Women in Montreal to Take Place on Valentine’s Day

  • Protesters marched last year to demand justice for missing and murdered women across Canada. File Photo Fatma Daldoul

“It’s for all women,” emphasized Chantel Henderson, an organizer of this year’s seventh Annual Montreal Memorial March to Honour the Lives of Missing and Murdered Women.

The origins of the march date back to 1991 in Vancouver, according to Henderson, who is part of the team at the Centre for Gender Advocacy at Concordia. It came in response to the murder of a Coast Salish woman from the area.

“The family was sick and tired of the police’s inaction so they started the march,” Henderson explained.

“The family was sick and tired of the police’s inaction so they started the march,” — Chantel Henderson, Centre for Gender Advocacy

As it stands, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has approved for the consultation to have an inquiry into the missing and murdered indigenous women of Canada. “We see that as a success,” Henderson remarked.

Nearly 1,200 indigenous women were murdered or went missing between 1980 and 2012, according to an RCMP report released last year.

“From my standpoint, as an Indigenous woman, there are still a lot of people who are unaware of the fact there is an increased number of murdered indigenous women in this country,” said Henderson, who is Ojibwe from the Pinaymootang and Sagkeeng First Nations located in Manitoba.

And this is an issue that shouldn’t be neglected, she says. “We need to be acknowledged, and recognized and supported, in order for this country to move forward,” Henderson continued.

The Centre for Gender Advocacy provides support and resources for the local community, such as peer support and advocacy, safer sex resources, and trans health resources. The Centre organizes a number of events and campaigns in order to create change and demand justice like the upcoming march.

The seventh Annual Montreal Memorial March to Honour the Lives of Missing and Murdered Women will take place on Feb. 14, starting at 3 p.m. at the St. Laurent Metro Station.

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