Mirroring the memorial march in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside, a group of people took to the streets in Terrace to honour the murdered and missing Indigenous Women & Girls (MMIWG).
Organized by Terrace-based organizations Matriarchs in Training (MIT) and Tears to Hope Society (THS), the event began with families of MMIWG gathering for an intimate ceremony at the Highway of Tears memorial totem pole at the highway 16 pullout near Kitsumkalum, west of Terrace. Members from the Terrace RCMP detachment also came out and laid red roses at the totem pole during the ceremony.
This was followed by a gathering outside the city hall where a crowd gathered to read out the names of people who have gone missing or murdered from the region. More than 50 people joined in the march to Tillicum Twin Theatres on Lakelse Ave. where the event continued.
Hilary Lightening from MIT, said the day was about honouring the memory of MMIWG as well their families and supporting them and showing them that their loved ones haven’t been forgotten and that they’re still at the forefront.
“I would say as far as the political landscape goes, in terms of everything that’s happening right now, when we see who shows up, it really says something about how committed they are to human rights,” Lightening added.
She also urged people to continue to uphold the cause and integrate the issues surrounding MMIWG into their daily lives and conversations.
“You need to be constantly revisiting this issue and making it you know a part of who you are,” Lightening said.
Lorna Brown, co-founder of THS said in addition to honouring the 51 women they estimate to have gone missing along the infamous Highway of Tears, they also wanted to take the opportunity to read out the names of women who went missing across the country.
Brown said she was overwhelmed by the families of MMIWG who came out to share their stories on this particular occasion.
“It means a lot, just people coming out from the general population to support this movement…I feel very grateful,” Brown added.