Recently, the RCMP released a report citing 1,181 missing and murdered aboriginal women in Canada since 1980. The report concluded the total number of missing and murdered aboriginal women exceeded previous public estimates.
“With the (aboriginal) women, more often than not, there’s a sexual component, there’s a lot of sexual violence,” says Mt. Pleasant. “I’m not finding that with the males, they’re dying really violent deaths.”
Ashley Blackstar and her family know this too well. Four days after the gruesome murder of her brother, the family visited the house where it happened. “There was blood splattered everywhere,” says Blackstar. “His blood was on the ground, on rocks, splattered on the side of the house, and on the steps.”
Cheryl Maloney, president of the Nova Scotia Native Women’s Association, says all these missing and murdered cases have more to do with race than gender: “Nobody has the numbers, nobody knows where to start,” says Maloney. “It just seems our people are disposable in this country.”