Documentary about Canada’s missing and murdered aboriginal women set to screen in Moncton
An award-winning documentary focused on Canada's missing and murdered indigenous woman is set to screen Thursday night in Moncton. The subject matter hits close to home for many aboriginal women in the Maritimes, who are calling for a national inquiry into this issue.
Patty Musgrave is organizing the screening of the documentary ‘Highway of Tears,’ which delves into multiple complex issues.
“We're looking at homelessness, poverty, addiction, abuse and a lot of these women are experiencing generational abuses from residential school survivors and the issues of residential schools,” says Musgrave.
Student Claudia Taylor says the idea of a national inquiry into missing and murdered indigenous woman is a no brainer.
“Why are we fighting for it? We are going through so much trouble and hassle for this national inquiry, it should just be done,” says Taylor.
For some aboriginal women, the murder of Loretta Saunders in February 2014 hurt deeply.
“It just spoke out to me being a native woman myself,” says Taylor. “This happened in our own backyard, her body was found here in Moncton. It just means it could happen to me or anyone else.”
Musgrave says Saunders’ death has inspired bursaries at the New Brunswick Community College – six of them, one per campus.
“Loretta was a student, she was a university student at St. Mary's who was doing her master’s thesis on missing and murdered indigenous women. So the importance of that to us is to create that legacy, so that her work is never forgotten,” says Musgrave.
Derika Milliea has applied for the Saunders' bursary. She commutes two hours a day from the Elsipogtog First Nation.
Milliea says she hopes the documentary makes people stop and think.
“I want them to walk away with the idea that this isn't okay, everything that is happening. A lot of people are blind to it, they don't want to know the truth,” says Milliea.
Organizers say they hope to have a big turnout for Thursday night’s screening and that it's just the beginning of the conversation.
With files from CTV Atlantic's David Bell