Plea for Justice: Sister of Homicide Victim Advocates for Indigenous Women Safety

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In the midst of an ongoing battle for justice, the sister of a homicide victim pleas for increased aid and attention for at-risk Indigenous women, trans individuals, and two-spirited people.

Meggie Cywink made her plea on what is recognized as a National Day of Action for Missing and Murdered Indigenous Girls. It was on this day that she revisited the still unresolved case of her sister, Sonia Cywink. Her last known location, alive, was the intersection of Dundas and Lyle Streets in London, Ontario on August 26, 1994. A mere four days later, Sonia’s lifeless body was discovered in the Southwold Township. Sonia was twenty-four weeks pregnant at the time, and despite numerous family and police efforts, her murderer remains unidentified.

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“There is still work to be done- leads to be chased, individuals to come forward with groundbreaking information,” shares Cywink, stressing the continuous pursuit of her sister’s justice. But pursuit is not what she merely desires, she extends her call to potential allies: political leaders, community chiefs, councils, and community members. With their combined efforts, Cywink believes there can be an enhanced safeguard for vulnerable Indigenous individuals.

Todd Cornelius, a Chief of Oneida of the Thames, seconded Cywink’s sentiment. He confessed, “I cringe thinking about the never-ending pain families must go through. We shouldn’t only grieve for our murdered and missing Indigenous women; we should act.”

However, grief is not equivalent to closure, as boldly stated by Cywink. For all families searching for answers, for closure, she urged the public to shed light on what they know.

“There is always someone who knows something,” she says. In the case of her sister Sonia, Cywink is hopeful that someone, harboring a secret for decades, will finally have the courage to speak up.

She issued a heartfelt plea for empathy, questioning “Could you bear three decades of uncertainty, if your loved one was the one brutally taken away and still unaccounted for?” concluded Cywink with a powerful note.

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Melinda Cochrane is a poet, teacher and fiction author. She is also the editor and publisher of The Inspired Heart, a collection of international writers. Melinda also runs a publishing company, Melinda Cochrane International books for aspiring writers, based out Montreal, Quebec. Her publication credits include: The art of poetic inquiry, (Backalong Books), a novella, Desperate Freedom, (Brian Wrixon Books Canada), and 2 collections of poetry; The Man Who Stole Father’s Boat, (Backalong Books), and She’s an Island Poet, Desperate Freedom was on the bestseller's list for one week, and The Man Who Stole Father’s Boat is one of hope and encouragement for all those living in the social welfare system. She’s been published in online magazines such as, (regular writer for) ‘Life as a Human’, and Shannon Grissom’s magazine.