Rinelle Harper case triggers renewed calls from MPs for national inquiry

first_imgAPTN National News OTTAWA–As Rinelle Harper continues to recover from a vicious attack that nearly killed her, politicians thousands of kilometres away spoke her name as they renewed calls for a public inquiry into murder and missing Indigenous women.NDP and Liberal MPs pressed the Harper government during question period Monday to call a public inquiry. The Harper government again rebuffed the calls, saying there was no need for one because Ottawa had an action plan to combat violence against Indigenous women.Harper, 16, was found along the Assiniboine River by a passerby on the morning of Nov. 8 where she had been left for dead. Winnipeg police said Harper was attacked twice, the second time after she crawled out of the river.“Because of her incredible strength and the support of her family and friends, she is getting better,” said NDP MP Niki Ashton, whose Churchill riding is in northern Manitoba. “When will the current government take leadership to put an end to violence against women, come up with an action plan and support the families so that what Rinelle went through, and what thousands of Indigenous women go through, will never happen again?”Susan Truppe, parliamentary secretary for status of women, handled the questions for the government.“There have been more than 40 studies into the plight of missing and murdered Aboriginal women,” said Truppe. “Now is not the time for more studies. Now is the time for action.”Cree NDP MP Romeo Saganash also pressed the government on the need for an inquiry.“First Nation communities demand a national inquiry,” said Saganash. “Why do the Conservatives reject this inquiry?”Truppe said there is no blanket support for a public inquiry.“I do not know why the members think everybody wants a national action plan,” said Truppe. “Not everybody wants a national action plan or a national inquiry.”Winnipeg Liberal MP Kevin Lamoureux also raised the issue during question period.“When is the government going to call for a public inquiry on murdered and missing Aboriginal women and girls?” said Lamoureux.“Canadians can count on our government to take violent crime seriously, including crimes against women and children,” said Truppe, in response. “Since we came to office, we have toughened sentences for murder, sexual assault and kidnapping and imposed mandatory prison sentences for the most serious crimes.”Police charged a 20 year-old male and a 17 year-old male in connection with the attack on Rinelle [email protected]@APTNNewslast_img

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