Caption: Minister Taylor (third from left) and delegates at NAWS4 in Nova Scotia.
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MEMBERTOU—The Minister responsible for the Women’s Directorate Elaine Taylor and several Yukon First Nations women represented Yukon at the fourth National Aboriginal Women’s Summit (NAWS) co-hosted by the Government of Nova Scotia and the Native Women's Association of Canada on October 20 to 22.
“The theme of NAWS IV—Promoting Equity, Empowerment and Leadership of Aboriginal Women—focused on action, solutions, and moving forward collectively," Taylor said. "For Yukon, the summit provided an opportunity to highlight and share the important work being undertaken by Aboriginal women's organizations in partnership with government to develop culturally relevant initiatives developed by and for Aboriginal women to address issues affecting Aboriginal women in the north.”
The Government of Yukon and the Yukon Advisory Council on Women’s Issues co-hosted regional summits in 2007 and 2012. Since then Yukon Aboriginal women’s organizations have undertaken significant work to implement recommendations from those and previous national summits. Projects include community-based work with the RCMP and other agencies in the prevention of violence including: supporting victim-based programming; raising awareness of missing and murdered Aboriginal women through the "Sisters in Spirit" initiative; developing an Aboriginal women and leadership project and engaging men and boys through the “Brothers in Spirit” initiative.
During the summit, Aboriginal women were asked to provide feedback on the recommendations and implementation of initiatives identified in previous national summits. They were also asked to help guide the development of a national socio-economic action plan for ensuring Aboriginal women achieve equity to that of other women in Canada. A meeting of premiers, ministers, national Aboriginal organization leaders and officials was also held to discuss planning for a national roundtable on missing and murdered Aboriginal women.
The Native Women’s Association of Canada, together with the province of Newfoundland and Labrador, hosted the first NAWS in 2007 which resulted in recommendations to improve the social and economic conditions of Aboriginal women and their families. NAWS II was held in 2008 in the Northwest Territories and focused on health, safety, wellness, equality and empowerment. Held in Manitoba in 2012, NAWS III focused on honouring murdered and missing Aboriginal women.
See backgrounder below.
Director, Cabinet Communications
Communications, Women’s Directorate
Government of Yukon Delegation
- Elaine Taylor, Minister Responsible for the Women’s Directorate and Deputy Premier
- Annie Blake, Yukon Aboriginal Women’s Council director and Vuntut Gwitchin First Nation member
- Amanda Buffalo, Aboriginal Women’s policy and program manager, Women’s Directorate
- Michelle Dawson-Beattie, Whitehorse Aboriginal Women’s Circle youth director and Champagne and Aishihik First Nation member
- Jennifer England, Women’s Directorate director
- Marian Horne, Yukon Aboriginal Women’s Council president and Teslin Tlingit Council member
- Ann Maje Raider, Liard Aboriginal Women’s Society executive director and Liard First Nation member
- Adeline Webber, Whitehorse Aboriginal Women’s Circle vice-president, Yukon Aboriginal Women’s Council Executive Elder and Teslin Tlingit Council member
- Yukon representatives for National Aboriginal organizations
- Lorraine Netro, Assembly of First Nations Women’s Council co-chair and Vuntut Gwitchin First Nation member