Indigenous Women's Activism

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Our federal government still says that the tragedy of missing and murdered Indigenous women isn't high on their radar and they don't seem to be budging on the issue.

But it is high on the radar of many many other people and organizations, including the United Nations. Today's episode excerpts an event focusing on the UN Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination against Women, or CEDAW for short. On June 13, 2015 a panel discussion was held in Toronto to spotlight how Indigenous women activists are changing the discourse around women's rights in Canada and abroad. The topic of missing and murdered Indigenous women featured prominently in the discussion.

Cherry Smiley is an artist and Indigenous feminist activist, working for years as a front-line anti-violence worker in a transition house for battered women and their children and rape crisis centre. She is also Campaign Coordinator for Campaign of Solidarity with Aboriginal Women, a project of The Feminist Alliance for International Action. 

Dr. Dawn Lavell-Harvard is Interim President of the Native Women's Association of Canada (NWAC). She has also worked to advance the rights of Aboriginal women as the President of the Ontario Native Women's Association for 11 years.

Their lectures were part of an event called CEDAW and Indigenous Women's Activism, which took place in Toronto on June 13, 2015.


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