Native Women’s Association of Canada Echoes Zinger Report Findings: Over Incarceration of Indigenous Women Is A Human Rights Travesty

Published on November 2, 2023

Press release eng

Gatineau, Que. – Statement by NWAC President Carol McBride in response to Ten Years Since Spirit Matters, A Roadmap for Reform of Indigenous Correction in Canada, report of the Correctional Investigator of Canada released November 1, 2023:

“Ivan Zinger, the Correctional Investigator of Canada, has released another damning report highlighting his frustration with the apparent inability – or unwillingness – on the part of federal officials to stem the increasingly disproportionate number of Indigenous Peoples behind bars.

Dr. Zinger correctly labels this inequity as a ‘human rights travesty’ and one of ‘Canada’s more pressing human rights issues’. He points out that he has been calling for change for a decade.

At the Native Women’s Association of Canada, we are also frustrated with the inaction on the part of the federal government and the Correctional Service of Canada. Like Dr. Zinger, we say it is high time for the government to loosen the colonial controls that result in the marginalization, over-criminalization, and over-incarceration of Indigenous people.

No country that considers itself to be a world leader in human rights would allow this injustice to continue. No Canadian should rest easy knowing that 50 per cent of federally incarcerated women are Indigenous. This is a horrific situation that demands an urgent response.

Indigenous communities must be allowed to run their own justice and correctional systems. This transfer of authority should have taken place 10 years ago. The overincarceration of Indigenous people in Canada is an outrageous and racist violation of human rights that must be corrected, starting today.”


About The Native Women’s Association of Canada

The Native Women’s Association of Canada (NWAC) is a national Indigenous organization representing political voices of Indigenous women, girls, Two-Spirit, transgender, and gender-diverse people in Canada. NWAC is inclusive of First Nations—on- and off-reserve, status, non-status, and disenfranchised—Inuit, and Métis. An aggregate of Indigenous women’s organizations from across the country, NWAC was founded on a collective goal to enhance, promote, and foster social, economic, cultural, and political well-being of Indigenous women, girls, Two-Spirit, transgender, and gender-diverse people within their respective communities and Canadian societies.

À propos de l'Association des femmes autochtones du Canada

L'Association des femmes autochtones du Canada (AFAC) est une organisation autochtone nationale qui représente la voix politique des femmes, des filles, des transgenres, des bispirituels et des personnes de sexe différent au Canada, y compris les membres des Premières nations vivant dans les réserves et hors réserve, les Indiens inscrits et non inscrits, les personnes privées de leurs droits, les Métis et les Inuits. Regroupant des organisations de femmes autochtones de tout le pays, l'AFAC a été fondée dans le but collectif d'améliorer, de promouvoir et de favoriser le bien-être social, économique, culturel et politique des femmes autochtones au sein de leurs communautés respectives et des sociétés canadiennes.