Violence Against Aboriginal Women And Girls

1778 WordsMay 21, 20178 Pages
A wide-ranging number of concerns were raised relating to the way the justice system deals with violence against Aboriginal women and girls. This included concerns with the police system, the judicial system, and the correctional system. Witnesses raised concerns of the non-response of police services to cases of violence against Aboriginal women. In domestic violence situations, police do not always respond in a timely manner to calls for assistance. Witnesses also stated that police sometimes dismiss claims of sexual assault if the woman is Aboriginal and leads a “high-risk” lifestyle. The Committee heard of challenges with the application of the laws, where double charges are applied by police and Aboriginal women are treated as…show more content…
The Committee has heard mixed testimony about whether alternative justice approaches are appropriate for domestic violence cases. In Iqaluit, witnesses told the Committee that Elders rarely ask that people be removed from communities, but prefer to deal with the accused as part of a family unit and as part of the community. Melanie Nimmo, assistant professor in Criminal Justice, University of Winnipeg, and Member of the Board, John Howard Society of Manitoba, said that their restorative justice program instils accountability on the part of the offender while helping to heal the victim and that 89% of their clients successful complete the program conditions without reoffending.[41] However, other witnesses voiced concerns that restorative and alternative justice practices were not a safe resolution for women who have experienced violence. Witnesses suggested that standards and screening guidelines must be established to ensure that female victims are not re-victimized or put in danger in the process. Racism continues to be a concern for Aboriginal people—in relation to both the police and the judiciary. Witnesses spoke of establishing a requirement to screen judges and police for prejudices before hiring and of offering anti-racism and anti-oppression training, specifically related to Aboriginal women.

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