AMC statement on the Helen Betty Osborne 50th anniversary commemoration
November 12, 2021
Treaty One Territory, Manitoba
Treaty One Territory, Manitoba – The Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs (AMC) issues this statement today to honour the memory of Helen Betty Osborne and to mark the Helen Betty Osborne 50th Anniversary Commemoration.
On November 13, 1971, Helen Betty Osborne was abducted and brutally murdered near the town of The Pas. Her body was discovered at a pump house, and her killers were not brought to justice for 16 years due to the anti-Indigenous racism, neglect and indifference that existed within the town of The Pas, the police and the Attorney General’s department. A high school student originally from Norway House Cree Nation, Helen Betty was 19 years old when she was killed.
Grand Chief Arlen Dumas said, “I am honoured to acknowledge the Helen Betty Osborne 50th Anniversary Commemoration on behalf of the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs. The AMC offers our deep and sincere condolences to the Osborne family, loved ones and the Norway House Cree Nation on the 50th anniversary of this terrible event and the death of our stolen sister, Helen Betty.”
“I wish to thank the Osborne Family, the Commemoration Planning Committee, and all attendees and supporters on behalf of the AMC and the Women’s Council,” said Grand Chief Dumas. “We will honour Helen Betty’s memory and the wishes of the Committee to work together to ensure safer places and communities for all First Nations women, girls and gender diverse peoples within this region and all across this country.”
“It was racism that fueled the murder of Helen Betty and long-standing obvious systemic racism that galvanized First Nations to seek justice for all Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls and gender diverse peoples. We thank all who have recognized this day and who have pledged in Helen Betty’s name to make this society a safer, more caring place for First Nations women and girls,” concluded Grand Chief Dumas.