Canada: concrete action to end violence against First Nations, Métis, and Inuit women, girls, and two-spirit persons needed now

The National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls released its final report on June 3, 2019. The 1,200 page report included 231 Calls for Justice to end the staggering levels of violence experienced by First Nations, Métis, and Inuit women, girls, and two-spirit persons in Canada.

The federal government accepted the report’s finding of genocide and committed to developing a National Action Plan to prevent and address the violence by June 2020. However, government delayed development of the National Action Plan, citing the pandemic as a cause for delay.

On June 3, 2021, the federal government released the 2021 Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls, and 2SLGBTQQIA+ People National Action Plan: Ending Violence Against Indigenous Women, Girls, and 2SLGBTQQIA+ People.

The National Action Plan creates a distinctions-based approach co-created with Indigenous women, girls and two-spirit people, and some actions have been undertaken while the plan was under-development. However, the plan fails to articulate a comprehensive list of government priorities, with associated goals, objectives, and implementation timelines clearly connected to each of the 231 Calls for Justice. The actions taken to date are too little, too late. The long delays and incomplete plan are unacceptable. The lack of transparency around the plan’s creation and implementation must end.

Every delay leads to further violence, and the further denial of justice to survivors. Real action cannot be delayed any longer.

The UN Committee on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) has said that the failure to provide a comprehensive, coordinated response to violence against Indigenous women, girls, and two-spirit persons is a grave human rights violation.

The government of Canada must not further delay action.

Call on Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations Carolyn Bennett to take urgent action now.

Please send an email or letter to Minister Bennett:

  • Start with ‘Dear Minister Bennett’ and a sentence about yourself to make your message unique.
  • Express concern about the levels of violence experienced by Inuit, Métis, and First Nations women, girls, and two-spirit people in Canada.
  • Welcome the release of the National Action Plan, and applaud its use of new ways of working to co-create the plan with Métis, Inuit, and First Nations women, girls, and two-spirit people.
  • Let the minister know you are concerned that the plan is too little, too late, and that stronger actions to to end the violence are needed now.
  • Specifically, call on Minister Bennett to:
    • Moving forward, include Indigenous activists and organizations who were left out of the process to develop the National Action Plan;
    • Develop robust, detailed implementation plans responding to the 231 Calls for Justice that are locally adapted and distinctions-based, while also ensuring that all Indigenous women, girls, and two-spirit people have access to the same level of services no matter where in Canada they live;
    • Make timelines, implementation plans, and monitoring and accountability tools and reporting publicly available; and,
    • Ensure implementation plans specifically addresses forced and coerced sterilization, as called for by the UN Committee Against Torture.

Write to:

The Honourable Carolyn Bennett

Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs

10 rue Wellington
Gatineau, QC  K1A 0H4


Twitter @Carolyn_Bennett

For more information visit our No More Stolen Sisters campaign webpage and read Amnesty International’s commentary on the National Action Plan.