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Approximately 1,200 indigenous Canadian women have been murdered or gone missing since 1980. Furthermore, a Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) report in May found aboriginal women account for 16% of female homicides and 11% of missing women despite only making up 4.3% of the country’s population. There has been little public inquiry into the high rate of murdered First Nations women and Prime Minister Stephen Harper has been quoted as saying the deaths should be viewed as individual crimes and not as a “sociological phenomenon.”
The hashtag #AMINext is putting more pressure on the government to investigate the unusually high death rates. Holly Jarrett began the campaign after her cousin, Loretta Saunders was found dead in February in New Brunswick. Since the campaign’s launch, more than 2,600 have tweeted the hashtag.