Ed­mon­ton Indige­nous ac­tivist Muriel Stan­ley Venne push­ing Cor­rec­tions Canada to in­ter­view con­victed killers to stop blood­shed

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Ed­mon­ton Indige­nous ac­tivist push­ing for prison in­ter­views

to stop the blood­shed

ED­MON­TON—One Ed­mon­ton Indige­nous ac­tivist is mak­ing the case that solv­ing the cri­sis of Miss­ing and Mur­dered Indige­nous Women and Girls means un­der­stand­ing why men prey on women in the first place.

On Wed­nes­day, Muriel Stan­ley Venne, founder of the In­sti­tute for the Ad­vance­ment of Abo­rig­i­nal Women, made that very point to Cor­rec­tional Ser­vice Canada as part of the Na­tional Abo­rig­i­nal Ad­vi­sory Com­mit­tee. She rec­om­mended that Cor­rec­tions Canada place a greater em­pha­sis on in­ter­view­ing con­victed killers who are locked up to get a bet­ter sense of their mo­ti­va­tions, their psy­chol­ogy, and, ul­ti­mately, to learn more about how so­ci­ety can pre­vent women from be­ing mur­dered.

Indige­nous women are six times more likely to be vic­tims of homi­cide than non-Indige­nous women, ac­cord­ing to 2017 num­bers from Sta­tis­tics Canada. An 2014 RCMP re­port said 1,181 Indige­nous women and girls were killed or have dis­ap­peared in Canada be­tween 1980 and 2012, al­though some ad­vo­cates say the num­ber is closer to 4,000.

“We have the op­por­tu­nity to turn things around and get good re­search done so we could take the next steps to pre­vent these killings,” Venne said af­ter at­tend­ing the meet­ing with Cor­rec­tional Ser­vice Canada com­mis­sioner Anne Kelly in Laval, Que.

Ex­perts be­lieve there are two types of men who kill women, with dif­fer­ent mo­ti­va­tions.

One is se­rial killers — the re­al­life bo­gey­men who com­mit in­com­pre­hen­si­ble acts again and again, prey­ing on the vul­ner­a­ble for their own sadis­tic plea­sure.

“If we’re talk­ing about the Willy Pick­tons of the world, we’re talk­ing about a very, very nar­row slice,” says Liam En­nis, an Ed­mon­ton-based foren­sic psy­chol­o­gist. He’s re­fer­ring to Robert Wil­liam Pick­ton, the Bri­tish Columbia pig farmer who con­fessed to 49 mur­ders, but was only con­victed of six, mak­ing him one of Canada’s most well­known and pro­lific se­rial killers.

En­nis said in the ma­jor­ity of cases where women are mur­dered (75 per cent of cases), it is by an in­ti­mate part­ner or fam­ily mem­ber – not a se­rial killer.

“Women are at most risk from men they are close to, in their own homes, at the hands of men who they’ve had in­ti­mate re­la­tion­ships with,” he said.

Learn­ing dif­fer­ent mo­ti­va­tions of se­rial killers, in­ti­mate part­ners to pre­vent more vi­o­lence at thes­tar.com/ed­mon­ton



Muriel Stan­ley Venne, In­sti­tute for the Ad­vance­ment

of Abo­rig­i­nal Women



Murial Stan­ley Venne wants Cor­rec­tions Canada to in­ter­view killers to un­der­stand their mo­ti­va­tions and learn how so­ci­ety can pre­vent women from be­ing mur­dered.

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