The Northwest Territories government is spending more than $300,000 to create a special RCMP unit dedicated to investigating missing people and unsolved murder cases.
The news comes almost a month after the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls held hearings in Yellowknife.
Freda Cardinal was among the many families at the hearings who pitched a specialized cold case unit for the Northwest Territories. Cardinal’s sister, Stella Cardinal, has been missing since the 1970s.
Hers is one of 71 unsolved historical cases in the region.
“I feel good about it in a way but where is it going from here is what I would like to know,” Cardinal said, adding she hopes the families will have a say in the creation of the unit. “Are they going to do some follow up with the recommendations and have something for us, some information? We need to know.”
A total of $304,000 is budgeted for the unit which would consist of three members to organize, catalogue and investigate cases of suspicious deaths, unsolved homicides, missing persons and unidentified human remains.
Currently the major crimes unit is responsible for these cases.