Pauktuutit and Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami Respond to UN CEDAW Report on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (March 10, 2015 Ottawa, ON) Pauktuutit Inuit Women of Canada and Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami support the findings of a March 6, 2015, report released by the UN Commission on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women.

The report finds that Canada is in violation of the Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women, which requires Canada to remove all discrimination against women in law, policy and practice. Canada ratified the Convention in December 1981.

“This report is very timely. We recently attended the first national roundtable on the issue and we are pleased with the first steps that were agreed to. It’s a beginning,” said Rebecca Kudloo, President of Pauktuutit.” In particular, this report reinforces the need to address the underlying socio-economic factors that make us uniquely vulnerable to violence and abuse. We hope the federal government will be an active partner in working with us to prevent more Inuit women from going missing or being murdered,” she added.

“This report supports the work Inuit have done collectively with provinces and territories over the past several years. I hope that these findings will help to accelerate the work we plan to undertake together over the next 18 months following the national Roundtable on missing and murdered indigenous women in February” said Terry Audla, President of Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami. “Inuit worked together to bring a unified voice to the Roundtable. We add our voice to the call for a national inquiry but insist that an inquiry be truly national in scope and demonstrate awareness of the specific circumstances of Arctic communities. “In March 2014, the Pauktuutit Board of Directors held in-depth discussions on the question of a national inquiry. ‘Many of us felt, and still feel, that an inquiry should not detract from immediate efforts to address the crisis circumstances in many of our communities. We know that there are too many Inuit women who are missing and have been murdered. We need to stop this from happening,’ Kudloo continued. ‘We need an immediate national action plan to address our specific issues, and we need this work to begin now.