HANSARD: Question to the government on Red Dress Day

Red Dress Day
Government Orders
May 2nd, 2023 / 8:05 p.m.

Jenny Kwan Vancouver East, BC

Mr. Chair, I believe that in her heart, the member really wants to move the issues forward.

Most recently, with the Coalition on Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women and Girls in B.C., in Vancouver's Downtown Eastside, our community has been talking about this issue. In fact, it was in Vancouver's Downtown Eastside where the first memorial march was led back in the day, so many years ago, when I was a community legal advocate. Fewer than 20 people showed up for that march, and now we see it across the country.

That being said, here are some of the issues people raised at that meeting. They are calling for the red dress alert to be implemented, of course, but beyond that they also want to see a national summit led and organized by indigenous women, and they want to see the continued conversation about a missing persons database. These are some of the things that need to be done, and they need to be done now. In addition, the coalition has been calling for government support to fund community people who are out there looking for missing loved ones. So often, they are just doing that work all on their own without any support anywhere.

My question for the member is this: Will the government undertake to ensure that the ideas and strategies coming from indigenous organizations, like the Coalition on Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women and Girls in B.C., and family members are supported? Will it actually fund those initiatives and implement them?

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