Increasing safety for Indigenous women and girls

Overview

Working together to create a better future for Indigenous women, girls and 2S+ people in Alberta.

Overview

We're committed to ensuring Indigenous women, girls and 2 spirit, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, intersex and asexual (2S+) people are treated with dignity and respect and live in safety and security, free from violence.

The Alberta Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls (MMIWG) Roadmap will guide government initiatives and a new Premier's Council on MMIWG will inform and track the progress of our actions.

Some government actions on this page include initiatives that support additional groups as well as Indigenous women, girls and 2S+ people and apply to issues broader than violence. Specific actions to reduce violence against Indigenous women, girls and 2S+ people will be added to the list as work continues.

Indigenous women, girls and 2S+ people know how to make Alberta a safer place and they will keep Indigenous people at the centre as we work to create a better future.

Premier's Council

The Premier’s Council on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls (MMIWG) will advise and guide actions to make Alberta safer for Indigenous women, girls and 2S+ people.

The council will include Indigenous women and 2S+ people and will examine laws, policy and programs while tracking progress on government actions.

  • Mandate

    The Premier's Council will:

    • collaborate with government ministries to apply the Alberta roadmap when developing policies and programs to prevent violence and increase safety and economic security of Indigenous women, girls and 2S+ people
    • engage other governments, service providers, civil society and the private sector to coordinate action and use resources to prevent violence and increase the safety and economic security of Indigenous women, girls and 2S+ people
    • guide the development of culturally responsive tools for government ministries, agencies, boards and commissions to use when creating their legislation, policies, programs, services and initiatives
    • review and made recommendations on public awareness campaigns, education and training initiatives related to Indigenous women, girls and 2S+ people and MMIWG2S+ people
    • monitor and report annually on government actions to prevent violence and increase the safety and economic security of Indigenous women, girls and 2S+ people
  • Council membership

    The Premier's Council will:

    • be appointed by ministerial order
    • have a 5-year mandate
    • have a maximum of 12 members

Strategic roadmap

Alberta’s Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls Roadmap will guide our actions as we work towards reducing violence and improving safety and economic security for Indigenous women, girls and 2S+ people.

Seven principles have been identified to guide government actions and advance reconciliation in Alberta:

  • Indigenous-led and developed solutions
  • Culturally informed and safe
  • A trauma-informed approach
  • A decolonizing approach
  • Inclusion of MMIWG2S+ families and survivors
  • Equity measures and equality of outcomes
  • Distinction-based needs and approaches

Pathways for action

The roadmap contains 4 pathways for action to set priorities and respond to each of the 4 root causes of violence identified by the National Inquiry on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls (National Inquiry).

The pathways include goals and actions to further inform government initiatives.

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    Community connections, healing and cultural supports

    Pathway one focuses on supporting language, culture, community connections, healthy relationships and well-being.

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    Education, economic independence and infrastructure

    Pathway 2 focuses on improving employment, economic development, housing, transportation and income supports.

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    Community wellness and improving the justice system

    Pathway 3 focuses on violence prevention, safety, health, children and youth services and justice.

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    Accountability to and inclusion of Indigenous women, girls and 2S+ people

    Pathway 4 focuses on data and research to increase awareness of Indigenous women, girls and 2S+ people’s perspectives and engage with Indigenous women, girls, 2S+ people, families and survivors.

National Inquiry response

The National Inquiry on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls was established to examine systemic causes of all forms of violence against Indigenous women and girls.

On June 3, 2019, the National Inquiry released its final report including 231 Calls for Justice to combat violence and the murder of Indigenous women and girls in Canada.

An Alberta Joint Working Group formed to examine the National Inquiry’s final report and develop recommendations for Alberta. The joint working group delivered its final report, 113 Pathways to Justice, to the Alberta government in January 2022.

Government initiatives

The following Alberta government initiatives support Indigenous women, girls and 2S+ people and make Alberta safer. This is the beginning of our work, which will continue with the MMIWG Roadmap as a guide.

  • Grant supports

    Supporting well-being for Indigenous women

    Increased funding for programs and services to support safety and well-being of Indigenous women, girls and 2S+ people was included in the Joint Working Group’s recommendations and the National Inquiry’s calls to action.

    The Alberta government provided over $1 million in grants to support a range of approaches to help stem the ongoing crisis of violence against Indigenous women, girls and 2S+ people, including:

    • improving the functionality of the Aboriginal Alert system across multiple platforms, building partnerships with law enforcement agencies and increasing public awareness of the service
    • providing programming to Indigenous girls and gender-diverse youth aged 15 to 21 to help prevent the normalization of violence
    • supporting community gatherings, healing circles and improved coordination with law enforcement and other emergency response agencies

    News: Supporting well-being for Indigenous women (April 14, 2022)

    Addressing gender-based violence against Indigenous people

    The Institute for the Advancement of Aboriginal Women (IAAW) received close to $900,000 to support programs to help Indigenous women find jobs, security and success in Alberta’s workforce – another important safety measure for women.

    News: Addressing gender-based violence against Indigenous people (May 4, 2022)

    Stopping the violence against two-spirit people

    Edmonton 2 Spirit Society is receiving a provincial grant to create a safer future for missing and murdered two-spirit people, survivors and their families. This funding aligns with Joint Working Group’s recommendation number 5 and the National Inquiry’s calls to action (Actions 18.1 to 18.32).

    News: Stopping the violence against two-spirit people (May 26, 2022)

  • Ending human trafficking

    Government has accepted, in full or in principle, 18 of the 19 Alberta Human Trafficking Task Force calls to action, including the creation of an Alberta Office on Human Trafficking in Persons and Indigenous-led specific initiatives and services. Work is underway to establish the office.

    Increased support for Indigenous women, girls and 2S+ people who are survivors of human trafficking is included in the Joint Working Group’s recommendations (Recommendation 87) and the National Inquiry’s calls to action (Action 3.4).

    Learn more about Alberta's efforts to end human trafficking:

    News: Fighting human trafficking | La lutte contre la traite des personnes (March 27, 2022)

  • Justice and policing

    Establishing Indigenous courts

    Edmonton’s Indigenous court opened in February 2022 to provide a culturally relevant, restorative and holistic system of justice for Indigenous people. The Calgary Indigenous Court was previously established in 2019.

    These courts respond to the unique challenges and circumstances of Indigenous people. They seek to address the issue of overrepresentation of Indigenous people in the justice system and are steps forward in implementing recommendations from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

    Incorporating Indigenous justice systems into Alberta Court Services is included in the Joint Working Group’s recommendations (Recommendation 53) and the National Inquiry’s calls to action (Actions: 5.6, 5.11, 9.2, 10.1).

    Updating Alberta's Police Act

    Legislation was passed in 2020 to extend the Police Act to include all First Nations police services in Alberta. This recommendation was included in the Joint Working Group’s recommendations (Recommendation 69) and the National Inquiry’s calls to action (Actions: 5.4, 5.5)

    News: Recognizing the importance of First Nations policing (October 21, 2020)

    Establishing an Indigenous Advisory Committee

    Government established an Indigenous Advisory Committee and is actively recruiting up to 12 members who will provide advice to government on matters within their mandate, including law enforcement, crime prevention, victim services, and restorative justice.

    This action was included in the Joint Working Group’s recommendations (Recommendation 94) and the National Inquiry’s calls to action (Actions: 5.4, 5.7, 9.2)

    News: Enhancing public safety with Indigenous advisers (April 25, 2022)

  • Infrastructure

    Increasing broadband coverage

    Government has committed to providing $390 million over 4 years to increase broadband coverage across Alberta including rural, remote and Indigenous communities.

    Reliable access to high-speed internet for remote and Indigenous communities has been identified as an essential right when it comes to economic development, as well as personal safety. This action was included in the Joint Working Group’s recommendations (Recommendation: 36) and the National Inquiry’s calls to action (Actions: 4.2, 4.4, 5.5).

  • Legislation

    Legislation to support the health and safety of everyone in Alberta, including Indigenous women, girls and 2S+ people: