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Harper brushes off calls for inquiry into violence against aboriginal women

 
Mordier L'eft
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User ID: 33867288
Canada
02/14/2013 12:15 AM

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Harper brushes off calls for inquiry into violence against aboriginal women
OTTAWA – Prime Minister Stephen Harper has brushed off renewed calls for a national public inquiry into missing and murdered aboriginal women.

The matter dominated a fiery question period in the House of Commons, with NDP Leader Tom Mulcair pressing Harper over a scathing report containing allegations from some aboriginal women and girls in northern British Columbia, who say they were sexually or physically abused by Royal Canadian Mounted Police officers.

Responding in French, Harper said the government has asked the Commission for Public Complaints against the RCMP to pursue the allegations in the report, and urged anyone with information about them to report it to the appropriate authorities. He said the government itself has no information about the allegations.

The commission is an independent agency created by Parliament to examine public complaints about the RCMP.

The report, from Human Rights Watch, said the RCMP is failing to protect aboriginal women and girls in northern B.C. It recommends that the government establish a national commission of inquiry into the murders and disappearances of indigenous women and girls before the end 0f the year.

Public Safety Minister Vic Toews reiterated the government’s stance in response to a question from NDP Status of Women critic Niki Ashton.

“I have asked the Commissioner for Public Complaints Against the RCMP to follow up on some allegations that have been made. In fact, I would encourage anyone with information that bears on these matters to pass it along to the appropriate authorities,” he said.

The Conservative responses, which didn’t directly address the matter of a national inquiry, prompted outrage from the opposition benches.

Liberal Leader Bob Rae said criminal allegations about the RCMP should be dealt with by an independent police force. He pressed the prime minister on the issue three times, eliciting similar responses.

“If Human Rights Watch, the Liberal party, or anyone else is aware of serious allegations involving criminal activity, they should give that information to the appropriate police so that they can investigate it,” Harper said.

Later, Ashton called the government’s answers “callous” and “out of touch.”

“Families are hurting, communities are hurting and they want to see a commitment to action,” she said. “That’s why we’re calling for an inquiry.”

Aboriginal organizations such as the Assembly of First Nations and the Native Women’s Association of Canada have long called for a national inquiry into violence against aboriginal women.

[link to www.montrealgazette.com]

Last Edited by Mordier L'eft on 02/14/2013 12:16 AM
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Axo Azeratel

User ID: 20063747
Canada
02/14/2013 12:18 AM
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Re: Harper brushes off calls for inquiry into violence against aboriginal women
WORD UUUP

Let's make Canada a BULLSHIT-FREE zone!

Canadian F
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 34341356
Australia
02/14/2013 12:19 AM
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Re: Harper brushes off calls for inquiry into violence against aboriginal women
When you said "Aboriginal" I thought you were talking the Strayan Abbo

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