Many in our community gathered at Galt Gardens on Friday afternoon to observe Red Dress Day. It is an initiative aimed at honouring the memories of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls across Canada. The fireside event which featured drumming and dancing, gave attendees an opportunity to connect and share memories of people they know who have not returned home.
“This is a national recognized day, and it’s important when we think of the day, it’s not a celebration, but it’s an opportunity to create awareness and bring the community together in a positive way, to acknowledge that this still is an issue,” said Charlene Bruised Head-Mountain Horse, Indigenous Advisor, City of Lethbridge.
Selena Medicine Shield, an advocate says participating in these types of events are important for her as she honours her grandmother.
“My grandmother, Gloria Black Plume, she was murdered in 1999, and she never got justice. I actually never got to meet her. So I go to all these places and these events, especially children’s schools, to make sure that they’re aware and just to share my story and what I’ve been through in my family.”
In 2015, the federal government pledged over $53-million to establish a National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls. The final report which was released in 2019 proclaimed that it is a national tragedy of epic proportion.