October 4, 2023 — Ottawa, Ontario — Unceded Traditional Territory of the Algonquin Anishinaabeg Nation — Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada
Today, the Honourable Gary Anandasangaree announced an additional $740,000 in funding to Long Plain First Nation to determine in greater detail the scope of a search, as described in the Prairie Green Landfill Feasibility Study Report. With this funding, the Long Plain First Nation can collaborate with experts, the owners and operators of the Prairie Green Landfill, provincial, and municipal leadership, and others to examine, in detail the proposed activities – such as personnel training, construction of facilities, equipment procurement, and hazardous, toxic, and biohazardous waste management – that are necessary to launch and conduct any potential search.
In May 2023, the Prairie Green Landfill Feasibility Study Report concluded that a search of the Prairie Green Landfill for the remains of three murdered First Nations women would be complex yet feasible and could be done while ensuring the health and safety of those involved. To that extent, work remains to identify how a search might be conducted, while always remembering the well-being of the families, and how to proceed with this work in a culturally sensitive and trauma-informed way.
We acknowledge that families, leadership, many communities, organizations, and people across the country have asked the federal and provincial governments to search the Prairie Green Landfill. Violence against Indigenous women, girls, and 2SLGBTQI+ people is an ongoing crisis that needs to be addressed with the utmost urgency. Canada believes that supporting survivors, victims, their families, and communities, is always the right course of action to take, and it requires the full support of all levels of government.
“Today’s funding announcement is a promising and significant step forward in our collective journey toward helping families heal. It’s reassuring to see that the federal government is listening and committing to actions that matter to our Nations. This is an investment in doing the search the right way with the right plans in place that were outlined in the Feasibility Study. We look forward to collaborating closely with all involved, ensuring that the respect and dignity of our lost sisters are at the forefront of these humane search and recovery efforts.”
Chief Kyra Wilson
Long Plain First Nation
“After 10 months of hard work, this marks a positive first step forward for the families. However, there’s more work ahead. This announcement sends a strong and meaningful message to First Nations across Turtle Island – we are still here, and we are not disposable. Like any other person in this country, we deserve dignity and respect, and that’s all we’ve been asking for.”
Grand Chief Cathy Merrick
Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs
“The situation surrounding the Prairie Green Landfill is heart-wrenching, and is part of the sad reality of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls. The only way to advance meaningful and lasting reconciliation in Canada is for all levels of government to be willing partners. The Government of Canada will continue to work in partnership with Indigenous leaders, families, survivors, and communities to support healing and closure. We are committed to developing a meaningful response to this report and supporting the areas of greatest need. Together, we will address this crisis.”
The Honourable Gary Anandasangaree
Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations
“The brutal murders of Indigenous women in our community are horrific, and represent the fear that Indigenous women, girls, and 2SLGBTQ+ people in Manitoba face on a daily basis. We must get this right, and we must take action that achieves results to address violence against Indigenous women, girls and 2SLGBTQI+ people. Our government continues to work with the families, Indigenous partners and all orders of government to help families and friends receive the closure they need and deserve.”
The Honourable Dan Vandal, P.C., M.P.
Minister of Northern Affairs and Minister responsible for PrairiesCan and CanNor
- In February 2023, the Government of Canada announced $500,000 in funding to support a study conducted by the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs to determine if it is feasible to search the Prairie Green Landfill.
- The Federal Pathway is Canada’s contribution to the broader 2021 Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls, and 2SLGBTQQIA+ People National Action Plan developed in partnership with provincial and territorial governments, Indigenous Peoples, survivors, families, and Indigenous women’s organizations in response to the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls.