(Press Release – Treaty 1 Territory, Manitoba – June 16, 2022) – The AMC responds to the recent discovery of the remains of a First Nation woman found near Highway 8 and Grassmere Road, in the rural municipality of West St. Paul, on June 6, 2022.
AMC Acting Grand Chief Cornell McLean, Lake Manitoba First Nation, said, “The Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs (AMC) extends heartfelt condolences to the family of Lori Ann Mancheese and the citizens of Ebb and Flow First Nation. In the last month, the AMC has learned of five First Nations women who have tragically lost their lives, including 24-year-old Rebecca Contois on May 16, 25-year-old Doris Trout on May 19, 31-year-old Tessa Perry on May 28, 24-year-old Mary Krug on May 30, and now 53-year-old Lori Ann Mancheese.”
Lori Ann Mancheese was unsheltered and had health and mobility issues due to her progressive arthritis. The farmer who discovered the remains of Lori Ann Mancheese, who asked to remain anonymous, noted the soil was wet from the weather, making walking on it even more difficult for someone with mobility issues.
Acting Grand Chief McLean said, “The AMC has concerns with the reports that the police do not suspect Mancheese’s death to be criminal. The family wants to know how she ended up in a field north of the city. We must acknowledge the loss of life of another First Nations woman. Lori Ann Mancheese was a mother of five and grandmother of seven who deserved to have proper supports in place to help navigate what we know to be deep-rooted social issues.”
First Nations women are severely impacted by the lack of access to resources to address poverty and homelessness, violence and discrimination, and domestic violence. The AMC has tried to seek funding and work with Canada to offer more support for unsheltered women. However, critical supports, such as providing access to safe emergency housing, are urgently needed.
“The AMC asks that police services in Manitoba take each loss of life seriously and work closely with the families seeking justice for their loved ones. First Nations leadership in Manitoba continue to call on the federal and provincial governments to honour and fully implement the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada 94 Calls to Action and the Reclaiming Power and Place: The Final Report of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls 231 calls to justice,” said Acting Grand Chief McLean.
The AMC encourages anyone who has information to reach out to the Red River North RCMP at 204-482-1222 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.
Northern Territory police minister Kate Worden, who is also the minister for domestic violence, said it had been a ‘heartbreaking week’ after two DV incidents. Photograph: Aaron Bunch/AAP
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