For immediate release
September 7, 2022
MKO Statement in Response to Tragedy in Saskatchewan
Treaty Five Territory, Thompson, MB – Manitoba Keewatinowi Okimakanak (MKO) Inc. is issuing this statement to respond to the tragedy in James Smith Cree Nation and Weldon, Saskatchewan that left 10 community members dead and another 18 injured.
Grand Chief Garrison Settee states:
“This morning, we heard the names and saw the photos of the people who lost their lives due to violence in Saskatchewan. My heart is heavy for the people of James Smith Cree Nation, along with nearby Weldon, who lost their loved ones and community members due to tragic and terrifying violence.
We have now learned that Myles Sanderson, a suspect in the mass stabbing, has been arrested in Saskatchewan. I want to share my gratitude to all the law enforcement officials who have worked tirelessly to track and capture Myles Sanderson. Knowing he is in police custody will bring comfort to many people who have been worried about his whereabouts.
I also express my appreciation for all first responders who provided care to Saskatchewan residents throughout this ordeal. My thoughts are with the Chief and Council of the James Smith Cree Nation as they grappled with the impacts of this tragedy.
First Nations people are strong and resilient. Our people have survived many tragedies. I encourage our relations in Saskatchewan to lean on one another and support each other as the grieving continues. Sadly, there are so many bright lights that have been lost to violence. It is essential we work to honour their legacy.
This tragic situation demonstrates the need to make continued efforts to address mental health and addictions issues with the goal of eliminating violence in First Nations across Canada.
For anyone who is struggling, I would like to share a reminder that the Hope for Wellness Help Line offers immediate help to all Indigenous peoples across Canada. It is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to offer counselling and crisis intervention. You can call the toll-free Help Line at 1-855-242-3310 or connect to the online chat at www.hopeforwellness.ca.”
For more information:
Melanie Ferris, Director of Communications
Email: [email protected]