Sisters in Spirit funding at risk

February 18, 2010

Helena Guergis
Minister of State Status of Women
733 Confederation Building
House of Commons
Ottawa, ON K1A 0A6

Dear Minister Guergis,

I write to urge you to commit to renewed funding for the Sisters in Spirit initiative of the Native Women's Association of Canada, without delay.

As the Minister of State for the Status of Women you have repeatedly praised the Sister in Spirit initiative in the House of Commons as being a “great research project...extremely successful in raising awareness to the issue of violence against aboriginal women and girls.” As recently as December 2009, the Secretary of State for the Status of Women described the initiative as the “groundwork,” from which to “attack the root causes of violence against aboriginal women and girls.”

It is confusing then, why there has been hesitation from the Status of Women to move forward and implement the important programs identified and developed under this successful project.

The Sisters group is in a position to begin implementing child welfare, justice and anti-poverty programs to help some of the most vulnerable women and children in Canada, but cannot as they await word from your office as to their future.

Again, I ask that you act swiftly to approve funding for Sisters in Spirit to support the implementation of these important initiatives.

Sincerely,

Libby Davies, MP
Vancouver East

This Open Letter to Ministers & Public Officials was posted on March 1, 2010