Hon. Lillian Eva Dyck:
Honourable senators, today I would like to honour the memory
of a beautiful Aboriginal woman, Daleen Kay Bosse (Muskego),
who went missing from Saskatoon, Saskatchewan on May 18,
2004. Daleen was a member of the Onion Lake Cree Nation and
was attending the University of Saskatchewan studying to
become a teacher at the time of her disappearance.
After Daleen went missing, her parents, Herb
and Pauline Muskego, organized the Missing Sisters Walk
dedicated to their missing daughter.
This past summer, I attended the fourth and
final Onion Lake Missing Sisters Walk to raise awareness
about Daleen's disappearance and to bring attention to the
500-plus unsolved cases of missing and/or murdered
Aboriginal women across Canada.
The Missing Sisters Walk has been a pillar of
strength for Herb and Pauline Muskego in dealing with their
grief over the loss of their daughter Daleen. Sadly, in
August 2008, her remains were found 10 miles north of
Saskatoon near Martensville, Saskatchewan. The perpetrator
has been charged with first degree murder and committing an
indignity to a human body.
In Canada, First Nations women are highly
overrepresented in missing women cases. Currently, there are
over 500 unsolved cases that need to be reviewed and
responded to. The process in dealing with missing women
cases requires the urgent commitment and cooperation of
Canada's police service and law enforcement authorities in
solving cases and helping to prevent the disappearance and
deaths of Aboriginal women.
Honourable senators, Canadians need to be
made aware of these 500-plus unsolved cases of missing First
Nations women. Canadian governments and authorities must
establish effective mechanisms and protocols in order to
protect First Nations women from racist and sexist acts of
violence. If we do not, even more Aboriginal women will go
For decades, not enough attention has been
paid when Aboriginal girls go missing in Canada. The
mentality of "it's just another Indian girl" must change.
Aboriginal women are not products for consumption or waste.
We are human beings and life givers who deserve respect and
Honourable senators, our women, our
grandmothers, our sisters and our mothers must be valued. We
owe it to Daleen, our daughters and granddaughters.