The AMC Sends Condolences to Tootinawaziibeeng First Nation Regarding Melinda Lynxleg
June 9, 2023
Treaty One Territory, Manitoba
Treaty One Territory, Manitoba – The Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs (AMC) responds to an update released by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) on the case of missing Tootinaowaziibeeng Treaty Reserve woman Melinda Lynxleg. It was revealed in a press conference held at 1:00 pm today that the RCMP recovered the remains of Melinda Lynxleg; her disappearance is now being investigated as a homicide. This adds another tragic case to the growing number of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls and Two-Spirit (MMIWG2S+) in Manitoba.
Melinda Lynxleg, 41, a Tootinaowaziibeeng Treaty Reserve mother of six, has been missing for over three years and is now suspected of being murdered. Melinda was last heard from on April 9, 2020, and although her family reported her missing and expressed concerns for her safety, there was little media coverage until late May 2020. The police and the province failed to adequately support the search for Lynxleg during the three years she was missing.
It has been four years since the recommendations of the National Inquiry into MMIWG were released. In that time period, only two of the 231 recommendations have been implemented, and the number of MMIWG2S+ continues to rise. The inaction of both federal and provincial governments, followed by the lack of acknowledgement, awareness, and support for all MMIWG2S+ cases, past and present, demonstrates why MMIWG2S+ is considered the national shame of Canada.
“The epidemic of violence perpetrated against First Nations women and girls in Canada must end,” said Chief Kennedy. “A serious threat that First Nations women and girls face today is that the violence towards them is deeply ingrained in active colonial laws, institutions, and systems. This is why support for MMIWG2S+ alerts, preventative support services, and immediate searches are vital.”
AMC calls on all levels of government to show their commitment to reconciliation efforts immediately by placing the safety of First Nations women, girls, and 2SLBGTQIA+ as a priority amidst such devastating losses. By committing to immediate actions when individuals are reported missing and implementing the remaining mandated recommendations from the National Inquiry’s 231 Calls to Justice, many lives can be saved, and the security of future generations can become a reality.
“We need to protect our women and girls from these predators who target them, and one of the best ways to do that is for the Winnipeg Police Service (WPS) and the RCMP to search for them and show that it is an immediate action. I offer my deepest condolences and prayers of strength and healing to the family of Whitney Lynxleg,” concluded Grand Chief Cathy Merrick.
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Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs
About the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs
The AMC was formed in 1988 by the Chiefs in Manitoba to advocate on issues that commonly affect First Nations in Manitoba. AMC is an authorized representative of 62 of the 63 First Nations in Manitoba with a total of more than 151,000 First Nation citizens in the province, accounting for approximately 12 percent of the provincial population. AMC represents a diversity of Anishinaabe (Ojibway), Nehetho / Ininew (Cree), Anishininew (Ojibwe-Cree), Denesuline (Dene) and Dakota Oyate (Dakota) people.