QUEEN’S PARK –MPP Sol Mamakwa (Kiiwetinoong) is calling on the Ford government to have the OPP immediately assume oversight of the Thunder Bay police force. Mamakwa raised the issue during question period Wednesday.
Mamakwa also hosted leaders and members of the Anishinabek Nation and Nishnawbe Aski Nation who were at Queen’s Park on Wednesday.
“All Indigenous peoples have the right to feel safe and to be treated equitably in Thunder Bay,” said Mamakwa. “They need to know what action has this government taken since we learned that the Thunder Bay Police Service failed to properly investigate the deaths of 14 Indigenous people. They also need to know what the government is doing to help begin building confidence in policing within the Indigenous community.
“This starts with the OPP assuming immediate oversight of the Thunder Bay Police Service.”
Anishinabek Nation Grand Council Chief Reg Niganobe and Nishnawbe Aski Nation Deputy Grand Chief Anna Betty Achneepineskum held a morning press conference at Queen’s Park calling on the Ford government for immediate action.
“The leaders of the Anishinabek Nation and Nishnawbe Aski Nation are here to tell this government that Indigenous people have no trust in the Thunder Bay Police. Their repeated failures to properly investigate the deaths of Indigenous people mean that an additional 25 unsolved cases of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls require an external review. Their families deserve answers,” said Mamakwa, who asked the government directly:
“Systemic racism within the Thunder Bay police is preventing justice for Indigenous people and it is intolerable. Will this government immediately call for OPP oversight of the Thunder Bay police?”