March 5, 2021
ANISHINAABE AND DAKOTA TERRITORY, MB — The Southern Chiefs Organization (SCO) is pleased to learn that Manitoba’s Chief Medical Examiner is proceeding with an inquest into the death of Eishia Hudson.
“This is a welcome development after the Independent Investigation Unit (IIU) did not lay criminal charges against the officer who shot and killed Eishia last year,” said SCO Grand Chief Jerry Daniels. “We are hopeful that this inquest will provide us with the answers we have been seeking since this tragic event took place.”
Eishia was shot and killed by Winnipeg police on April 8, 2020. She was just 16 years old and unarmed at the time.
The inquest by the Chief Medical Examiner was called in accordance with The Fatality Inquiries Act. Under Section 19(5)(a) of The Act, an inquest can be ordered if the Chief Medical Examiner has reasonable grounds to believe that the deceased person died as a result of the use of force by a peace officer acting in the course of duty.
“SCO and Eishia’s family want this process to be thorough, unbiased and comprehensive,” added Grand Chief Daniels. “To honour Eishia’s memory we need to do everything we can to make sure she did not die in vain, and that we can bring an end to deaths of our people at the hands of colonial police forces.”
This inquest is just part of the response Eisha’s family and SCO are demanding from the province of Manitoba. All parties also want to see a comprehensive public inquiry into the shooting that can address systemic racism in police interactions with Indigenous peoples. SCO continues to reiterate its call to the premier of Manitoba for a full inquiry into the fatal shooting of Eishia.
“I have a sworn obligation to seek justice for First Nation people,“ concluded Grand Chief Daniels. “I will not rest until we have received the complete picture about what lead to this young woman’s death.”
The date, time, and location of the inquest has yet to be determined by the Chief Judge of the Provincial Court of Manitoba. SCO will provide updates as soon as they are made available.
The Southern Chiefs’ Organization represents 34 First Nations and more than 80,000 citizens in what is now called southern Manitoba. SCO is an independent political organization that protects, preserves, promotes, and enhances First Nations peoples’ inherent rights, languages, customs, and traditions through the application and implementation of the spirit and intent of the Treaty-making process.
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