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Abuse of Indigenous Women

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In Canada, there has been an on going concern in the matter of missing and murdered Indigenous women. Although many First nations individuals have many barriers placed upon them by society, the government and many other institutions. Indigenous women face many of these barriers very harshly. Aboriginal women are vulnerable to many different forms of abuse because of not only being female but also due to issues such as poverty. First nations citizens have been faced with extreme difficulties throughout every aspect of their lives. These difficulties ultimately include the discrimination they face daily from police services, lack of resources in order to assist their need, etc

There have been many problems which have lead up to the social problem of missing and murdered Indigenous women which include the historical upbringing of our First nations population, and unfortunately through recent factors as well.

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“The crisis of missing and murdered Indigenous women in Canada means that police services across the country should be acutely aware of and sensitive to the well-being, vulnerability, and needs of Indigenous women,” said Farida Deif, Canada director at Human Rights Watch. “Instead, in some cases, it is the police themselves who are making Indigenous women feel unsafe.” Indigenous women throughout Saskatchewan told Human Rights Watch that they would not report a crime against them or a crime involving an Indigenous woman that they had witnessed out of fear that the police might retaliate by harassing them or by treating an Indigenous suspect with physical violence. Concerns about police harassment led some Indigenous women in Saskatchewan, including respected community leaders, to limit their time in public places where they might encounter police officers

This breakdown of trust between Indigenous women and law enforcement is particularly dangerous for victims of violence and those at risk who may be hesitant or fearful to call on the authorities for help. Many Indigenous women interviewed said they believe that the police abuse they experienced reflects ongoing racial bias against the Indigenous community in Saskatchewan. Canada has made only limited progress to ensure that police are accountable for their policing failures, Human Rights Watch found. Lack of accountability for policing abuses against Indigenous women exacerbates long-standing tensions between police and Indigenous communities in Canada.

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The Native Women’s Association in Canada has calculated that about five-hundred aboriginal women have gone missing in Canada over the last 20 years (Kuokken, 2008). Within this paper topics to be discussed include how the abductions and murders in and around North America are affecting the health of these young indigenous females. what places a target on young indigenous females back, how this places a label on indigenous families and communities, what do the indigenous people have to say and what do the police and government have to say on this matter. Is there any action being taken to reduce the numbers of missing and murdered indigenous women in North America, what do we need to do to prevent these terrible situations from occurring, plus how technology can effect the lives of indigenous females. Women within the ages of twenty-five and forty-four are five times more probable to die from violence that any other women in the world due to violence (Glichrist, 2010). There are many factors as to why these girls are dying. Such as being violently evicted from their homes and being sent out to the streets to freeze to death (Razack, 2014). Drug deals gone bad, sex trafficking, or just cruel racists wanting to feel a sense of power by murdering an indigenous female in cold blood (Kuokkanen, 2008)

No case is better then the other. The place where we all call home, here in North America can be a scary location, many people, particularly indigenous women are put in positions where they fear for their life (Glichrist, 2010).

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In summary, it is not fair to completely discount the Canadian government in the fight against the disappearances and murder of these Aboriginal women; “Generous government support” has been applied in an attempt to assuage the pain of the people who have suffered so much loss

Like reservations for Native Americans, treaties have been established in order to compensate them for their loss of land and mineral wealth; unfortunately, these treaties are unable to bring back the respect they once had, or the women who have already been killed.

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Anderson, S. (2016). Stitching through Silence: Walking With Our Sisters, Honoring the Missing and Murdered Aboriginal Women in Canada. TEXTILE, 14(1), 84-97, DOI: 10.1080/14759756.2016.1142765

Kuokkanen, R. (2008). Globalization as Racialized, Sexualized Violence. International Feminist Journal of Politics, 10(2), 216-233. DOI: 10.1080/14616740801957554

Smylie, J., & Cywink, M. (2016). Missing and murdered indigenous women: working with families to prepare for the National Inquiry/Femmes autochtones disparues ou assassinees : travailler avec les familles en prevision de l’enquete Nationale. Canadian Journal of Public Health, 107, 4-5.

Bailey, J. & Shayan, S. (2016). Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women Crisis: Technological Dimensions. Canadian Journal of Women and the Law, 28(2), 321-341. Retrieved from

Razack, S. H. (2016). Sexualized Violence and Colonialism: Reflections on the Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women. Canadian Journal of Women and the Law, 28(2), 1-5 doi: 10.3138/cjwl.28.2.i

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