OTTAWA, June 29, 2016 /CNW/ - A new report released by Statistics Canada examining the tragically higher proportion of violence faced by Indigenous peoples underscores the need for urgent action, Assembly of First Nations National Chief Perry Bellegarde said today. The report, Victimization of Aboriginal people in Canada, 2014, covers a number of forms of violence or victimization, including but not limited to sexual assault, robbery and physical assault.
"This report shines yet more light on the ongoing crisis of violence facing Indigenous peoples in Canada and is another urgent call for action," said Assembly of First Nations National Chief, Perry Bellegarde. "The evidence in this report demonstrates the situation will not change unless we work together to identify and resolve the interconnected root causes of these crimes. There are many contributing factors to this ongoing crisis, from poverty, to inadequate housing, to colonial legacies, to race and gender. We must act now. Our people need proper housing, wellness centres, daycare, education and all the supports needed to foster hope, wellbeing and close the gap in the quality of life."
According to the report released today, Indigenous peoples are experiencing more than double the rate of overall violent victimization, while the sexual assault rate of Indigenous peoples was almost three times that of non-Indigenous peoples. Indigenous women are especially susceptible to these crimes, and the disturbing reality that Indigenous women are experiencing violent crimes simply because they are Indigenous women is clearly indicated.
The report does have limitations in that it does not provide a gender-based analysis and only provides general data on Indigenous peoples, with no distinction between First Nations, Métis, and Inuit communities.
The Assembly of First Nations is the national organization representing First Nation citizens in Canada. Follow AFN on Twitter @AFN_Comms, @AFN_Updates.
SOURCE Assembly of First Nations
For further information: Jenn Jefferys, AFN Communications Officer, 613-241-6789, ext. 110 or [email protected] ; Alain Garon, AFN Bilingual Communications Officer, 613-241-6789, ext. 382; 613-292-0857 or [email protected]