Traditionally, Indigenous women, girls, gender-diverse and Two-Spirit people have been known as “water carriers” or protectors of the water. As climate change progresses and the health of the world’s waters declines, this relationship between Indigenous women and the water becomes ever more important. For many coastal Indigenous communities, the lives of their people depend on the health of the water and the safety of the marine life in it. By hosting the Indigenous Women’s Voices on Marine Safety and Ocean and Waterway Environmental Protection event this year, our goal is to amplify Indigenous voices and work together toward long term solutions.
In 2020, the Native Women’s Association of Canada will be hosting the Indigenous Women’s Voices on Marine Safety and Ocean and Waterway Environmental Protection in Ottawa, Ontario, bringing together Indigenous stakeholders annually from across Canada to discuss working collaboratively to improve marine safety and environmental protection of the oceans and waterways. Indigenous coastal communities share ties to Canada’s oceans that span generations. They rely on them as a source of livelihood, food security, and valuable transportation routes. As such, water is one of our most important resources.
Through this project NWAC will achieve the objective of building capacity to amplify the voices of Indigenous women, girls, gender-diverse and Two-Spirit people in discussions related to marine safety, oceans protection and for greater engagement of Indigenous women in discussions regarding ecosystem conservation and environmental protection of Canada’s oceans and waterways.