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Overrepresentation of Indigenous Peoples in the criminal justice system is a serious and complex issue rooted in systemic discrimination and the legacy of colonialism.
In January 2021, the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada was mandated with developing, in consultation and cooperation with Indigenous partners, provinces, and territories, an Indigenous Justice Strategy to address systemic discrimination and the overrepresentation of Indigenous Peoples in the justice system.
The objective of the Indigenous Justice Strategy Engagement is to facilitate a national engagement initiative that focuses on gathering perspectives and recommendations of First Nations, Inuit, and Métis women, Two-Spirit, transgender, and gender-diverse people; as well as Elders, seniors, Knowledge Keepers, youth, and service providers for the development of the Indigenous Justice Strategy (IJS).
This project aims to engage Indigenous women, Two-Spirit, transgender, and gender-diverse people to ground the IJS in Indigenous Ways of Knowing and being. In addition, it will guide the ways systemic discrimination and overrepresentation of Indigenous Peoples in the justice system are addressed. This project will engage Indigenous women, Two-Spirit, transgender, and gender-diverse people to encourage the sharing of Knowledge, experience, common practices, and the barriers in the justice system.
NWAC will employ targeted activities for inclusive and in-depth participation when collecting detailed, qualitative, and quantitative information of Indigenous communities' experiences with the justice system and their recommendations for reform. This project intends to gather experiential information to get a better understanding of the diverse needs of Indigenous communities related to crime prevention, policing and diversion, courts, corrections, and access to legal and social supports, from a culturally-relevant and gendered perspective.
The Indigenous Justice Strategy Engagement project will include a national survey, a series of engagement sessions in rural and urban settings, as well as a final report on the findings and recommendations.