Added: December 3, 2016 – Last updated: December 3, 2016


Author: Pamela Palmater

Title: Shining Light on the Dark Places

Subtitle: Addressing Police Racism and Sexualized Violence against Indigenous Women and Girls in the National Inquiry

Journal: Canadian Journal of Women and the Law - Revue Femmes et Droit

Volume: 28

Issue: 2

Year: 2016

Pages: 253-284

ISSN: 0832-8781 – Find a Library: WordCat | eISSN: 1911-0235 – Find a Library: WordCat

Language: English

Keywords: Modern History: 20th Century, 21st Century | American History: Canadian History | Types: Interracial Rape



Project MUSE (Restricted Access)

University of Toronto Press (Restricted Access)


Author: Pamela Palmater, Department of Politics & Public Administration, Ryerson UniversityAuthor's Personal Website, Wikipedia

Abstract: »Canada has had a long-standing problem with both societal and institutional racism against Indigenous peoples, especially within the justice system. Numerous national inquiries, commissions, and investigations have all concluded that every level of the justice system has failed Indigenous peoples. More recent inquiries indicate that racism against Indigenous peoples is particularly problematic in police forces in Canada. Yet, despite the evidence, little has been done in Canada to act on the recommendations. This has resulted in the over-incarceration of Indigenous peoples, numerous deaths of Indigenous peoples in police custody, and the national crisis of thousands of murdered and missing Indigenous women and girls. This article seeks to highlight the lesser-known problem of police-involved racialized and sexualized abuse and violence against Indigenous women and girls as a root cause of the large numbers of murdered and missing Indigenous women and girls in Canada. It is argued that an in-depth look at police-involved disappearances, sexual assaults, and murders of Indigenous women should be included in a national inquiry into the high rates of murdered and missing Indigenous women and girls. It is hoped that such an investigation under the national inquiry will result in evidence-based analysis and recommendations for legislative and policy-based changes that are consistent with the human rights protections afforded Indigenous women and girls and with the calls for action by Canada's Truth and Reconciliation Commission, various United Nations human rights bodies, and the families, communities, and nations of the Indigenous victims.« (Source: Canadian Journal of Women and the Law)


  Introduction (p. 254)
  Getting to an Inquiry (p. 256)
  Focusing the Inquiry (p. 259)
  Tina Fontaine–Failed by Many (p. 260)
  Inquiries and Reports on Police Racism and Violence towards Indigenous Peoples (p. 262)
    1989 Royal Commission on the Donald Marshall Jr. Prosecution (p. 263)
    1996 Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples (p. 263)
    1999 Aboriginal Justice Inquiry of Manitoba (p. 263)
    2004 Saskatchewan Commission on First Nations and Métis Peoples and Justice Reform (p. 265)
    2007 Ipperwash Inquiry (p. 266)
    2013 Human Rights Watch Report (p. 266)
  Statistics on Violence in Police Families (p. 267)
  Denying the Problem: Normalization of Racism and Misogyny (p. 268)
  Police Racialized and Sexualized Violence (p. 272)
    Racialized Police Violence in Toronto (p. 272)
    Police Sexual Violence: Examples from Ontario and Québec (p. 273)
    Racism and Sexual Violence in the RCMP (p. 276)
  Justice Denied: Indigenous Women's and Girl's Fear of Reporting (p. 280)
  Recommendations (p. 280)
  Conclusion (p. 282)

Wikipedia: History of the Americas: History of Canada