APTN National News
OTTAWA—The Trudeau Liberal government is expected to announce its long-awaited inquiry into the high number of murdered and missing Indigenous women Tuesday and is planning to hold its first meeting with families Friday.
Indigenous Affairs Minister Carolyn Bennett, Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould and Status of Women Minister Patricia Hadju are expected to hold a press conference Tuesday at 12:30 p.m. local time to announce the inquiry.
The three ministers are also expected to meet with family members on Friday at an Ottawa hotel.
Some family members said they had been recently contacted by an individual speaking on behalf of Bennett’s office inviting them to Friday’s gathering, which is expected to be the first of what is expected to be several family gatherings across the country. Any family affected by MMIW in the Ottawa area are invited to attend.
Friday’s meeting will be private and each family will have a chance to tell the three ministers what they want from the inquiry, including who they think should be the commissioner, APTN was told by an organizer.
Wilson-Raybould, Bennett and Hadju attended a private traditional ceremony in Gatineau Monday held to honour the work the government is doing with the inquiry.
Bennett has stated she expects the inquiry to be up and running by this summer. She has stated she wants a thorough consultation process with the families to get the inquiry right.
According to police stats, about 1,200 Indigenous women and girls have gone missing or been murdered over the past three decades.