My red dress, hanging under the Weeping Willow tree
The REDress project, created by Métis artist Jaime Black, highlights the issue of the missing & murdered Indigenous women in Canada.
October 4th is a day to honor the lives of over 4,000 Indigenous women tragically taken from their loved ones. It is also a day meant to raise awareness about the ongoing violence, at significantly higher rates toward Indigenous women and girls than any other demographic in Canada.
This effort was started by the Sisters In Spirit Vigil (SIS) organization and the Native Women’s Resource Centre in Toronto nine years ago, and includes support services for the family members of the missing and murdered women (#MMIW).
The group began in answer to the lack of resources through any government services and the continuing lack of public response on any meaningful scale.
Current Prime Minister, Stephen Harper outraged many when he said in an interview on the CBC last December, that looking into this issue, particularly with a national inquiry was “not high on his government’s radar”. To date, despite a later outright denial of what he said in that recorded video, his government has continued to do nothing about the issue.
In response, artist Jaime Black chose to highlight the issue with her project designed to represent the women with red dresses in a photo display that is being shown in various galleries across the country. In various interviews she said she would like people to hang their own red dresses wherever in their community or wear one on October 4th in solidarity for the women and their families.
The public can also participate in the honoring by attending various candlelight vigils in various cities and/or with a virtual candle online project: http://www.october4th.ca/
Please see Jaime’s full story at http://www.redressproject.org
For more information about the Sisters in Spirit group, see: https://www.canadahelps.org/en/giving-life/community-happenings/sisters-in-spirit-honouring-the-lives-of-missing-and-murdered-indigenous-women/