Red Dress Day: what does it mean?

Red Dress Day, is also known as the National Day of Awareness for Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls, and Two-Spirit People (MMIWG2S).

The day was originally started in 2010 as the REDdress art installation by Mètis artist, Jamie Black.

The artist chose the colour red after being told that red is the only colour spirits can see.

Red dresses are used to call the spirits of MMIWG2S back to their families and loved ones.

The day honours, and brings awareness to the Indigenous women, girls, and two-spirit people who have been subject to disproportionate violence in Canada.


The Athabasca Tribal Council held many events downtown between 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. to honour those who are missing.

A solidarity walk was held at 10 a.m. from Borealis Park to Kiyām Community Park.

One participant, Melanie Dene, walked today to raise awareness for her missing cousin.

Dene’s cousin, Shelly Dene, went missing from Edmonton almost 10 years ago.

Shelly is a Mikisew Cree First Nation woman and her family says the case still remains cold.

“There hasn’t been enough done,” said Melanie Dene when talking about her cousin’s case.

“It’s nice to see people but there needs to be more.”

Dene said she would love to see more done by our government systems.

“Even though there are still 231 calls for justice, I haven’t seen anything being acted upon whether it be provincial, federal, municipal.” Dene says.

She continued, “even with an Indigenous community, I feel like there needs to be more attention as opposed to having just one day of out the year to walk down a street.”

She wants to see more justice for both families and survivors.

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