The Tribute section of this website is an important addition to the database. The tributes provide a space in which families of the missing and murdered can write about their family members, and instead of focusing on the details of their death or disappearance they can share memories of the person they know and love. We hope this space will humanize the numbers, honouring the fact that Indigenous peoples are so much more than statistics.
One of the family members who organizes with Families of Sisters in Spirit had this to say about why the Tributes section is so important:
We don’t want the media to speak about our family members. They always focus on facts and details about the bodies. We don’t want the media using inaccurate and harsh language about our family members. We should be the ones creating the messages and language. We need to have a place to remember our family members and how we experienced them. Having a tribute section allows people to see who these people were, and that they were loved and valued. We can talk about how beautiful and special our family members were to us, whereas mainstream media can’t, or won’t do that. This is why families need this space to humanize our loved ones in ways that honours their stories and is accessible to families.
For the partners and those involved this work, the leadership of families affected by violence is of utmost importance.
It Starts with us:
If you want your stories told, this is a chance to share how important your loved one was to you, and only you can do that, your contribution to the database is essential. Something that you can share with the world. This can be about witnessing our own history, family stories and creating oral history through story telling even if that means learning about family history through the loss of loved ones. We can building community through the telling of our stories. – Families of Sisters in Spirit