The national inquiry into missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls will begin in Whitehorse the week of May 29.
Inquiry officials announced a few dates for hearings and planning meetings earlier this week, but many details are still being worked out, said interim communications director Sue Montgomery.
Family hearings in Whitehorse are expected to last at least three days, but a lot will depend on how many survivors ask to speak.
“We’re looking for families of the missing and murdered Indigenous women, but also survivors of violence,” Montgomery said.
“That can be any kind of violence, it can be domestic violence, obviously sexual assault, (or) violence by institutions.”
Anyone interested in participating in the Whitehorse hearings is being asked to email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 1-844-348-4119. After leaving their name and contact number, those people will get a call back from an inquiry official to gather some more details about their story, Montgomery said.
More information about the time and location of the inquiry will be announced closer to May.
Not everyone has to tell their story publicly at the inquiry, Montgomery said.
“They could give it to a statement taker, we’re going to have statement takers, or through art, or through beading, or through song, poetry, writing, whatever.”
Before the inquiry starts, a series of regional advisory meetings are being held across Canada including in Whitehorse from April 11 to 13.
The goal of those meetings is to get a sense of regional-specific issues before the inquiry begins.
The three days will include one day for families, one day for grassroots organizations, and one for government officials.
Contact Ashley Joannou at email@example.com