rabble blogs are the personal pages of some of Canada's most insightful progressive activists and commentators. All opinions belong to the writer; however, writers are expected to adhere to our guidelines. We welcome new bloggers -- contact us for details.

Activist Communique: Families of Sisters in Spirit press release

Please chip in to support more articles like this. Support rabble.ca today for as little as $1 per month!

Families of Sisters in Spirit press release - October 4, 2011

OTTAWA, ON, CANADA, ALGONQUIN TERRITORY - October 4, 2011: Families of Sisters in Spirit, along with our allies, call upon all peoples of this land to come together today and show solidarity and support for the families of missing and murdered Indigenous women.

Families are sharing stories of struggle and strength on Parliament Hill on October 4, 2011 at 10:30 a.m. for the 6th Annual Sisters in Spirit vigil. The vigil is followed by a solidarity march to Victoria Island at noon for a feast and social justice fair.

"It is so important that we keep getting the stories of our missing and murdered loved ones out there so that more people can become aware of how much of a crisis this is; and how it affects hundreds, if not thousands of families and communities" says Laurie Odjick who is speaking on Parliament Hill, and is the mother of Maisy Odjick who disappeared along with her friend Shannon Alexander in September 2008.

Across Canada this week more than 50 communities will take part in rallies, vigils, and feasts to honour the more than 600 Indigenous women and girls who have disappeared or been murdered in recent decades. Families and supporting organizations are calling for justice and action from the Canadian government.

A march is being held in Vancouver on October 4th starting at Victory Square (Cambie and Hastings) and ending with a ceremony at Oppenheimer Park. The event is organized by the February 14 Women's Memorial March committee to demand action on women's safety, particularly in the Downtown Eastside.

A march and vigil in Montreal are organized by Missing Justice and 2110 Centre for Gender Advocacy and begin at 6 p.m. at Cabot Square. And in Toronto, the Native Women's Resource Centre joins with others for a vigil with handmade lanterns at Allan Gardens from 7 - 9 p.m. We will be ending with a ceremony at Oppenheimer Park.

"This is a cross-country movement that is growing stronger by the day," says Melanie Morrison, the sister of Tiffany Morrison who disappeared in June 2006 and was found murdered in June 2010. "We won't stop speaking out. We won't stop searching for answers. We refuse to let our loved ones be ignored. That is why I am supporting Families of Sisters in Spirit and all these events across Canada."

Family members speaking on October 4th at the Ottawa vigil include Bridget Tolley, Laurie Odjick, Pam and Fred Fillier, Sue Martin, and Beverley Jacobs.

The Ottawa event is organized by Families of Sisters in Spirit, with support from Amnesty International, KAIROS, the Canadian Labour Congress, Minwaashin Lodge, AIDS Committee of Ottawa and others. A joint statement in support of the vigils will be released on October 4, 2011.
The time for justice and action is now.

For more information, or to arrange interviews:

Ottawa event information: https://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=219416194784813

Events across Canada: https://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=163367953739707

Families of Sisters in Spirit

Bridget Tolley: (819) 441-4536

Kristen Gilchrist: (613) 808-1481

Beverley Jacobs: (778) 877-7402

Amnesty International

Beth Berton-Hunter: (416) 363-9933 ext 332


More info: Sisters in Spirit vigils light a candle and feed the fire of remembrance

Toronto's Sisters in Spirit vigil is tonight at Allan Gardens at 7:00 p.m.

Thank you for reading this story…

More people are reading rabble.ca than ever and unlike many news organizations, we have never put up a paywall – at rabble we’ve always believed in making our reporting and analysis free to all, while striving to make it sustainable as well. Media isn’t free to produce. rabble’s total budget is likely less than what big corporate media spend on photocopying (we kid you not!) and we do not have any major foundation, sponsor or angel investor. Our main supporters are people and organizations -- like you. This is why we need your help. You are what keep us sustainable.

rabble.ca has staked its existence on you. We live or die on community support -- your support! We get hundreds of thousands of visitors and we believe in them. We believe in you. We believe people will put in what they can for the greater good. We call that sustainable.

So what is the easy answer for us? Depend on a community of visitors who care passionately about media that amplifies the voices of people struggling for change and justice. It really is that simple. When the people who visit rabble care enough to contribute a bit then it works for everyone.

And so we’re asking you if you could make a donation, right now, to help us carry forward on our mission. Make a donation today.


We welcome your comments! rabble.ca embraces a pro-human rights, pro-feminist, anti-racist, queer-positive, anti-imperialist and pro-labour stance, and encourages discussions which develop progressive thought. Our full comment policy can be found here. Learn more about Disqus on rabble.ca and your privacy here. Please keep in mind:


  • Tell the truth and avoid rumours.
  • Add context and background.
  • Report typos and logical fallacies.
  • Be respectful.
  • Respect copyright - link to articles.
  • Stay focused. Bring in-depth commentary to our discussion forum, babble.


  • Use oppressive/offensive language.
  • Libel or defame.
  • Bully or troll.
  • Post spam.
  • Engage trolls. Flag suspect activity instead.