National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls FINAL REPORT
ACWA LETTER OF SUPPORT
Marion Buller, Chief Commissioner
National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls
June 20, 2019
Dear Ms. Buller,
On National Indigenous Peoples Day, the Asian Canadian Women’s Alliance* is sending a message of solidarity in wake of the Final Report on the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls. Through a progressive, feminist, anti-oppressive framework, ACWA is a network that amplifies voices of our communities. Our goal is to build strong coalitions within our communities, as well as with Indigenous, Black and other marginalized communities, to educate, advocate and effect systemic change toward a just and equitable future for all. The land we inhabit is part of the Treaty Lands of the Mississaugas of the Credit and the traditional territory of the Haudenosaunee, Anishinaabe, and the Huron-Wendat Nations. We cannot do ACWA’s work without acknowledging that Canada, a settler nation-state, sought to erase the cultures and the people that existed prior to it.
One of our projects is a memorial to the female victims of World War II in our ancestral and other countries, including those in the Rape of Nanking in China; the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in Japan; and the women, both Asians and a smaller number of Europeans, from Korea, China, Taiwan, Vietnam, Malaya, Burma, Thailand, the Philippines, Portuguese Timor, the Dutch East Indies, New Guinea, Macao, Hong Kong, and other Japanese-occupied countries and territories, who were forced into sexual slavery by the Japanese military. Many of the latter, the so-called comfort women, were ostracized and disbelieved when they came forward with their stories. Many did not receive the support they needed after surviving the trauma of violence and war. Similarly, we know that thousands of Indigenous women and girls have suffered horrific trauma that has gone mostly unrecognized.
The National Inquiry’s Final Report calls for transformative legal and social changes to resolve the crisis that has devastated Indigenous communities across the country. Chief Commissioner Buller, we endorse your statement: “The hard truth is that we live in a country whose laws and institutions perpetuate violations of fundamental rights, amounting to a genocide against Indigenous women, girls and 2SLGTQQIA people.”
ACWA is committed to implementing the call for actions to guide Canada’s decolonizing work. It will take a collective responsibility and political will to ensure that the Commission’s recommendations be implemented. We look forward to having ongoing dialogue with you and Indigenous women’s groups to deepen our own learning and identify ways to hold all levels of government accountable.
The Asian Canadian Women’s Alliance
*Founding Members include: Jenny Ahn, Lynn Deutscher Kobayashi, Amy Go, Avvy Go, Ann Kim, Rosel Kim, Joy Kogawa, Anita Lee, Min Sook Lee, Winnie Ng, Dora Nipp, Maryka Omatsu, Julia Shin Doi, Pam Sugiman, Jenna Tenn-Yuk, and Jan Wong