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Red Dress Day 2024

Content warning: The following post contains information related to murdered and missing Indigenous women, girls, and 2SLGBTQQIA+ that some readers may find disturbing.

On May 5th, we observe Red Dress Day in recognition of missing and murdered Indigenous women, girls, and 2SLGBTQQIA+. The movement began on May 5th, 2010 with the display in Winnipeg, Manitoba by Indigenous artist Jamie Black. She chose red because it is often associated with powerful emotions and spirituality, and in some Indigenous cultures, it is believed that red can be seen by the spirits, and can help them find their way back home. The term ‘red dress’ is also sometimes written as ‘REDress’ to exemplify the movement’s goal towards redressing, or remedying, the violence against Indigenous women, girls, and 2SLGBTQQIA+.

This powerful and important message continues today as we encourage and fight for greater awareness, and for more political and legal action in response to this nationwide crisis. You can show your support by wearing red or displaying a red dress, take part in local marches and other Indigenous-led activism, and learn more through education resources and Indigenous stories. You can find more information on the Native Women’s Association of Canada website, and your local community or university library. Simon Fraser University has a helpful list of resources as well.


Author: Lexa, ITMP Blog Writer

Image Credits: Liang Sen/Xinhua via Getty Images

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