Treaty 2 Territory- May 12th is Moose Hide Campaign day. The inspiration for the campaign came to co-founders Paul Lacerte and his daughter Raven in 2011 when they were hunting together on their traditional Carrier territory. They were close to the Highway of Tears in northern British Columbia, where so many women, particularly Indigenous women, have gone missing or been murdered. Reflecting on the sorrow of this setting, they brought down a moose that would help feed the family for the winter and decided to use its hide to create the very first moose hide pins. Since then, the campaign has grown into a recognized nationwide anti-violence movement, with thousands of participating communities, schools, and organizations. Over two million moose hide pins have now been distributed in Canada and across North America.
A few stats that may raise your awareness:
- Half of all women in Canada have experienced at least one incident pf physical or sexual violence since the age of 16. (likely higher in many other countries)
- On any given night in Canada, 3,491 women and their 2,724 children sleep in shelters because it isn’t safe at home.
- 1 in 3 women attending post-secondary will be the victim of a sexual assault by the time they graduate.
- Approximately every six days, a woman in Canada is killed by her intimate partner.
- There were 1,181 cases of missing or murdered Indigenous women in Canada between 1980 and 2012, according to the RCMP. However, according to grassroots organizations and the Minister of the Status of Women, the number is much higher, closer to 4,000.
- Children who witness violence in the home are twice as likely to develop psychiatric disorders as children from non-violent homes.
- Indigenous women are killed at six times the rate of non-Indigenous women.
- Violence against women costs taxpayers and the government billions of dollars each year. Canadians collectively spend $7.4 billion alone dealing with the aftermath of spousal violence.
“The Moose Hide Campaign provides a sacred space to contribute in our nation’s healing journey. It is a movement that calls upon people to speak up, take action, educate and support each other!” (Murray Sinclair, former Chief Commissioner of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission)
Transforming Organizations, Communities and Nations
Across Canada, organizations, communities, and nations are embracing the Moose Hide Campaign. They are part of a growing network of inspired citizens answering the call to put an end to widespread domestic and gender-based violence once and for all. The campaign has spread across all levels of government, police forces, Indigenous nations, the not-for-profit sector, K-12 schools, and post-secondary institutions – and many others are taking it up to create safer spaces and support reconciliation. It’s an Indigenous innovation for the benefit of all Canadians.
Reconciliation in Action
Moose Hide Campaign gatherings are opportunities for experiential learning and reconciliation. Participating in the campaign is a practical way for all of us to take action on the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP), the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada Calls to Action and the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls Calls for Justice.
FNT2T will be setting a ‘Moose Hide Campaign’ kiosk at the Hockey Tournament in April so please stop by and show your support by picking up and wearing a moose hide pin.
Renée McGurry, Earth Lodge Development Helper
Earth Lodge website: lodge.fnt2t.com