Good afternoon

Please find the following news release from the Union of BC Indian Chiefs.

December 14, 2011

Union of BC Indian Chiefs Applauds UN Inquiry into Missing and Murdered 
Aboriginal Women

(Coast Salish Territory/Vancouver BC, December 14, 2011)  An inquiry into the 
missing and murdered Indigenous women in Canada is being launched by the United 
Nations Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW).

"The Union of BC Indian Chiefs welcomes the inquiry undertaken by the CEDAW 
into the murders and disappearances of Indigenous women and girls and believes 
it will finally hold the Canadian government to account on the international 
stage," said Grand Chief Stewart Phillip, President of the Union of BC Indian 
Chiefs.  "To truly address and eliminate the tragic and devastating issues of 
violence against Indigenous women and girls, the Harper Government must be 
compelled and forced to examine the intersecting and deeply-rooted factors of 
poverty, colonialism, and systemic racism.  We hope that the Harper Government 
will not try to block the inquiry as we believe an open and inclusive inquiry 
can be helpful in addressing this national tragedy."

"The Union of BC Indian Chiefs supports the efforts of Native Women's 
Association of Canada, the Canadian Feminist Alliance for International Action, 
Downtown Eastside Women's Centre and February 14th Women's Memorial March 
Committee and we will fully cooperate with the CEDAW inquiry," said Grand Chief 
Phillip.  "This is not only a 'women's issue', this is a fundamental and 
universal human rights issue."

In conclusion, Grand Chief Phillip stated "Our hearts and prayers forever go 
out to the families who lost their loved ones and to their many friends who 
continue their commitment to ensure justice will be served.  The UBCIC joins 
them and will never abandon the families who have lost a daughter, a sister, a 
mother, an aunt and a grandmother."

Media inquires:
Grand Chief Stewart Phillip, Union of BC Indian Chiefs
Phone: (250) 490-5314

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]


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