Even extreme cold could not dampen the spirit of the Regina Women’s March on Saturday.
While rallies took place across the world, organizers in Regina took a different approach.
They chose to focus on Indigenous women and girls that have been murdered or are currently missing.
“It’s not this thing that doesn’t touch us. It’s happening and we need to address it as it’s happening. It’s not far away,” said Paula Krasiun-Winsel, Regina Women’s March co-organizer.
Saskatchewan routinely records some of the highest rates of intimate partner violence in Canada.
The names of the missing and murdered are too many to count.
Among them is Erica Hill, stabbed to death at only 16-years-old in the fall of 2018.
“I don’t think that any mother should have to go through this and have to worry and suffer. This will never end for her,” said marcher Kerry Opoonechaw-Bellegarde.
There was also Nadine Machiskinic, whose body was found at the bottom of a hotel laundry shoot in 2015.
Regina police recently refused to release the RCMP report into the investigation of her death.
“People need to remember her name. People need to understand everything needs to change – the system, the racism, the justice system, violence against women needs to be addressed,” Darin Milo, one of the marchers.
Organizers are hopeful a younger generation will carry on the torch.
“In my school, there are still lots of boys being sexist to girls. I thought it would be important for me to come out so I can support all the women being treated unfairly,” said Kaitlyn McNeil, a 12-year-old marcher.
Since the first women’s march, Saskatchewan became the first province to introduce Clare’s Law.
The legislation allows police to disclose a person’s criminal history to their partners in some cases.
“Today is not the end. Today is the beginning of a revolution for women and girls in Saskatchewan,” Deciman said.