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conference and banquet focus on missing women

August 12, 2008

Missing Women: Decolonization

Third Wave Feminisms and Indigenous People of Canada and Mexico
August 14–17
Regina, Saskatchewan

Missing Indigenous Women Benefit Banquet

Saturday August 16

the conference

An international conference, Missing Women: Decolonization, Third Wave Feminisms and Indigenous People of Canada and Mexico, will be held August 14–17, 2008 in Regina, Saskatchewan.

Presented by Luther College in conjunction with the Women’s Studies Department and the University of Regina.

From the northern border city of Juárez, Chihuahua to the west and east coasts of Canada, Indigenous girls and women are at far higher risk to be kidnapped, sexually abused or raped, and murdered.

According to the Native Women’s Association of Canada’s Sisters in Spirit initiative, there are more than 500 missing and murdered Indigenous women in Canada. In Mexico, thousands of women have disappeared and hundreds of women have been killed in Juárez since the early 1990s. This violence is now spreading throughout the country, leaving a trail of grief and trauma in its wake.

Deemed femicide, a phenomenon that has been described as “gender extermination” the taking of Indigenous women reveals a violence spurred by sexualized racism thereby tracing the legacy of colonization. While the conference provides a forum to examine this violence, it also maps a path to justice.

The goals of the conference are the following:

  • to raise public awareness about violence against indigenous women on a global context, but specifically in Canada and Mexico;
  • to participate in the ongoing development of a critical analysis of systemic sexualized racism;
  • to create a forum for multi-disciplinary organizations to meet and discuss both the theoretical and the grassroots activist work that needs to happen to stem this tide of violence;
  • to facilitate support and activist networks for family members of missing women.

Anticipated outcomes include:

  • creating a documentary DVD of the conference for the purpose of secondary and post-secondary education;
  • the installation of a memorial art piece created by Adrian Stimson, as part of The Healing Gardens, First Nations University;
  • networking specific to interests of participants through facilitated affinity groups.

Speakers will discuss issues that are common to Indigenous women living in colonized countries, specifically patterns of violence, sexualized racism, the impact of residential schools, poverty, and the lack of access to education.

Confirmed speakers:

Internationally acclaimed filmmaker Lourdes Portillo (San Francisco).

From Mexico:

  • Isabel Arvide, journalist and author;
  • Cynthia Bejaranos, Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice at New Mexico State University;
  • Rev. Kim Erno, Susanna Tores and others from ELCA Centre, Mexico City;
  • Paula Flores and Eva Arce from Ciudad Juarez, mothers of missing women.

From Canada:

  • Maria Campbell, author Half-Breed and public educator;
  • Amber Dean, editor, Representations of Murdered and Missing Women, West Coast Line 53;
  • Bev Jacobs, President of Native Women’s Association of Canada;
  • Laura Madison, curator of Lost Treasures Art Gallery;
  • Morningstar Mercredi, author of Warrior Women;
  • Ian Peach, special advisor, Office of the Federal Interlocutor for Métis and Non-Status Indians;
  • Gwenda Yuzicappi, mother of Amber Redman, Standing Buffalo Reserve.

And many other local panelists.

the banquet

Missing Indigenous Women Benefit Banquet
Saturday 16 August 2008

Join us for the Missing Indigenous Women Benefit Banquet as we raise money and awareness for justice for missing Indigenous women.

The evening, held at the Conexus Art Centre in Regina, will feature a savoury feast, a live auction, lively music, and a presentation by the Academy Award-nominated filmmaker and activist Lourdes Portillo. A live auction of artworks from well-known artists and notable figures such as Joni Mitchell will follow. To complete the evening, an ensemble from the Regina Symphony Orchestra (RSO) will accompany you as you partake in a silent auction including one-of-a-kind art objects, weekend getaways, event tickets, and much more.

Proceeds from the benefit banquet will go towards funding the missing Indigenous women conference taking place in Regina.

event details
  • 6 pm reception – featuring the opening of the silent auction accompanied by the Regina Symphony Orchestra ensemble
  • 7 pm grand buffet – featuring bison, wild rice, Saskatoon berry desserts, and more
  • 8 pm keynote presentation – featuring acclaimed artist and activist Lourdes Portillo
  • 8:30 pm live auction
  • 9:30 pm close of the silent auction
  • Individual tickets are $60 per person.
  • Tables of eight are available for $480.
  • To reserve your tickets, please call Brittany at 1.306.337.2563 or email
  • Mailed cheques may be made payable to Luther College – Missing Women Conference, with “Benefit Banquet” noted in the memo section.

external website
Visit this Website for more information about these events, and to register for the conference.


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