Caught on cam: Men remove red dresses symbolizing missing Indigenous women from island highway
Published Thursday, April 15, 2021 9:38AM PDT Last Updated Thursday, April 15, 2021 9:42AM PDT
NANAIMO -- A video has surfaced showing two men removing red dresses along a stretch of Vancouver Island highway that were placed to raise awareness towards missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls (MMIWG).
Many are calling the act disrespectful to Indigenous people, especially MMIWG.
The video was taken in the south end of Ladysmith along the railway tracks which run parallel to Highway 1.
It shows two individuals using a branch to remove several red dresses that are hung in the trees.
The red dresses have become a symbol for raising awareness of MMIWG and they can be seen along highways up and down Vancouver Island.
“When you see a red dress, it usually indicates that somebody has taken the time to recognize and honour the fact that there are thousands of missing and/or murdered Indigenous women and girls,” said Carla Voyageur, co-founder of the Lil’ Red Dress Project.
The incident took place on the traditional territory of the Stz’uminus First Nation.
“I don’t understand why but I do want to help educate our community about why we are doing these things,” said Roxanne Harris, Chief of the Stz’uminus First Nation.
Harris adds that they plan on hanging new red dresses where the ones were taken down in the near future.