OTTAWA – In response to the Prime Minister’s announcement of the upcoming Canadian federal election, the Native Women’s Association of Canada (NWAC) is launching its get out the vote campaign, “We’re done asking, we’re voting.” The campaign seeks to activate Indigenous women from coast to coast to coast to get to the polls and have their voices heard.
“Indigenous women have waited long enough for the government of Canada to make our issues a priority,” says NWAC CEO, Lynne Groulx. “This election, we’re done asking, we’re voting. When political parties see us show up at the polls, they are going to have to start listening and taking action.”
With the discoveries of the unmarked graves at residential schools, Canadians are finally realizing the scale of the genocide that took place not long ago against Indigenous people. The effects of that genocide are still impacting Indigenous women, girls, gender-diverse people, and their communities today.
“Canada’s electoral system is a system of Western colonization, but it’s the system we have. The only way to make change, to get to self-determination, to protect our communities and the land, is to make sure our voices are represented in Parliament,” says Groulx. “The way to do that is to exercise our human right, the right to vote.”
Indigenous women, girls, and gender-diverse people are a marginalized group, facing high levels of murder, trafficking, abuse, poverty, displacement, and mental illness, yet the Canadian government continues to do little to support these communities, promote well-being, or take their perspectives into consideration. As the traditional knowledge keepers of their communities, Indigenous women have a lot to offer on some of the biggest issues of the day such as climate change, health and well-being, and reconciliation.
NWAC will be providing resources, workshops, and a comprehensive voter guide, to make sure everyone knows when, where, and how to vote in this federal election. Once all party platforms are released, NWAC will be grading the different parties on their responses to important Indigenous women’s issues, the results of which will be available at nwac.ca.
For information, or to arrange an interview, contact Gloria Galloway at email@example.com or 613-447-6648.