The National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Ingenious Women and Girls has wrapped up and participants and activists have renewed faith in the process.
27 families and survivors participated in the public sessions and 12 private sessions with statement takers were also conducted.
Chief Commissioner Marion Buller told participants of the Inquiry they “shine the light on racism, sexism, and indifference. You lead us in our work”.
A number of recommendations were heard throughout the three days. Concerns were heard about the lack of transportation in the communities, and how members didn’t really have a choice to hitchhike or not because the bus never ran.
Some concerns were raised that not all families were able to attend and participate and people were worried that this would be the only opportunity in the province to talk about their missing loved ones but Buller says they are planning on announcing more hearing dates between January and May of next year.
The woman who initiated the Highway of Tears movement, Florence Naziel says she is happy that people were able to talk about it after all these years.
Florence influenced her cousin Gladys Radek to organize all 7 walks to raise awareness for missing women and girls from local First Nations communities. Gladys and her family pushed forward and walked to Parliament Hill to demand a National Inquiry from Steven Harper.
Radek says she is happy to see the families be able to share their stories, those same families told her they now have a big weight lifted off their shoulders. Radek announced once the Walk for Tamara 2017 got to Smithers that this would be the last walk she would organize, but she also says that their movement’s work isn’t finished yet.
Radek says it is now time to help the mend on their path the healing and although it may not have been included in this inquiry, there needs to be something done for them as well.