WHITEHORSE—Yukon is joining its provincial and territorial counterparts and national Aboriginal organizations in calling for a national public inquiry into missing and murdered Aboriginal women and girls.
Premier Darrell Pasloski tabled a motion in the Yukon Legislative Assembly today, urging the Government of Canada to hold the inquiry, and to consult with the provinces, territories and national Aboriginal organizations on the inquiry’s terms of reference.
“This is a national tragedy and a problem that this government takes very seriously,” Pasloski said. “After careful review of the information coming out of the recent Ministers Responsible for Aboriginal Affairs meeting, the Yukon government has decided to support the call for a national inquiry by the federal government on this important matter.”
Ministers Responsible for Aboriginal Affairs met April 17 in Winnipeg to discuss a variety of issues, including continued cooperation between jurisdictions, education, and the issue of murdered and missing Aboriginal women in Canada. Senior Yukon government officials attended the meeting on behalf of the premier.
“Yukon has long been working on this issue and has implemented a number of programs related to Aboriginal women and violence against Aboriginal women,” Pasloski added.
These programs include:
• Support to the Yukon Sisters in Spirit project to research occurrences of missing and murdered Aboriginal women in Yukon, and work with their families and communities to develop relevant violence prevention and public education initiatives.
• Creation of the Prevention of Violence Against Aboriginal Women Fund for projects addressing Aboriginal women’s safety and wellness in Yukon. The Yukon government has contributed approximately $1.5 million dollars to the fund since its inception.
• A commitment of $450,000 over three years (2013 to 2016) to support Aboriginal women’s organizations in developing projects that respond to the recommendations made at the Yukon Aboriginal Women’s Summit in October 2012.
• Core operational funding over three years (2013 to 2016) to the Whitehorse Aboriginal Women’s Circle, the Liard Aboriginal Women’s Society and the Yukon Aboriginal Women’s Council.