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Nahanni Fontaine, MLA St. Johns
April 10, 2017

Christine Wood

On April 8th, we learned the investigation into the disappearance of Christine Wood, age 21, is now rendered a homicide with the arrest of Brett Overby.

I want to take a moment to simply say to Melinda and George Wood, Christine's parents from Oxford House First Nation, how incredibly sorry I am for the loss of their beloved daughter.

I had the opportunity to meet with the Wood family and they are honestly one of the most humble, kind, compassionate and loving families I've ever met.

From the moment Christine was stolen from her family, Melinda and George relentlessly searched for their beautiful daughter, day and night. Christine's parents remained in Winnipeg from August to just before Christmas and returning back again to Winnipeg soon afterwards. I met with Melinda and George just before they were leaving back home at Christmas, and I can tell you, it was so evident how torn they were to leave their baby girl and go back up north. Madam Speaker, simply put, Melinda and George are phenomenally courageous people.

I also want to acknowledge some of the many people that stood with Melinda and George throughout this nightmare: Christy Dzikowicz from the Canadian Centre for Child Protection; MKO's Grand Chief Sheila North Wilson and Jennifer Wood; Oxford House First Nation; James Favel and the Bear Clan; the Winnipeg Police Services' Missing Persons Unit; Melissa Martin from the Winnipeg Free Press; and, finally, Bernadette Smith, chair of the Manitoba Coalition of Families of Missing and Murdered Women.

Bernadette shared with me this morning the conversation she had with Melinda just a couple of days ago. Naturally, she just wants to bring her daughter home.

I spoke with Christy Dzikowicz this morning, who wanted me to share there will be a vigil in honour of Christine Wood this coming Wednesday. I will post the details on social media.

Finally, Madam Speaker, let me say again, indigenous women and girls' lives are sacred and are to be valued and honoured, and anything less is simply not acceptable.

Miigwech.