Indigenous

Unresolved MMIWG case to get awareness boost with posters on the back of 18-wheelers

It's been 14 years since Tiffany Morrison was last seen or heard from, but the family of the young mother from Kahnawake, Que. hopes that a new poster campaign will help spread awareness about the unresolved homicide case.

Tiffany Morrison, from Kahnawake, Que., went missing in 2006

Tiffany Morrison, from Kahnawake, Que., went missing on June 18, 2006. Her remains were found four years later.

It's been 14 years since Tiffany Morrison was last seen or heard from, but the family of the young mother from Kahnawake, Que., hopes that a new poster campaign will help spread awareness about the unresolved homicide case.

"It means more possibilities of people coming forward because the more her face is out there, the more pressure it puts on the people that know," said Melanie Morrison, Tiffany's older sister.

Tiffany, 24, was last seen on June 18, 2006 in the LaSalle area of Montreal, before getting into a taxi with a man. She never made it home. Four years later, her remains were found in a wooded area at the foot of the Honoré Mercier Bridge that connects LaSalle with Kahnawake.

The homicide case remains open with the Sûreté du Québec but was moved to the cold case division in April 2019.

These posters of Tiffany Morrison in English and Kanien'kéha will be put on the back of 18-wheelers to help raise awareness of the unresolved homicide case. (Meurtres et Disparitions Irrésolus du Quebec)

The 76 by 91 centimetre posters will be affixed to the back of 18-wheeler trucks travelling across the country. It's a part of a campaign that Meurtres et Disparitions Irrésolus du Quebec has been doing since 2018.

Stéphane Luce is the president of the non-profit organization that raises awareness of unresolved missing and murdered cases in the province. He said a section dedicated specifically to Indigenous cases was recently added to the organization's website and the organization is currently working with three First Nations families to have posters of their loved ones put on the back of trucks. 

"There will be thousands of eyes that will see the posters and it won't be the same eyes everyday," he said.

"If I put a billboard by Highway 132, that's a good thing, but the people who will see it are the same day after day. Chances are at the back of the truck with a 30 by 36 inch poster, people have time to read it and see the face of the person."

The Morrison family has a number of a billboards throughout Kahnawake, but agrees that these posters will reach more people.

The family of Tiffany Morrison has three billboards throughout Kahnawake, Que. asking for information on her murder. (Jessica Deer/CBC)

"The fact that they're going on trucks, [they're] going to reach a broader spectrum of people. It grabbed my attention right away because I want her out there as much as possible so that we can get answers," said Melanie Morrison.

Although Morrison has been an advocate for her sister and other missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls for over a decade, she still meets people at speaking engagements around Montreal who were previously unaware of her sister's case.

"It's amazing how even in our own area there's people that don't know," she said. 

"It shows how we're so trained to just brush the issue aside if it doesn't affect us directly."

In addition to Tiffany Morrison, posters have been created for Pinaskin Ottawa and James Ambroise-Petiquay. Both are young Atikamekw men who are missing.

Ottawa, 25, from  Manawan, Que., has been missing since Oct. 11, 2010 while Petiquay, 26, has been missing from Wemotaci, Que., since Oct. 15, 2017.

Pinaskin Ottawa, 25, has been missing from the Atikamekw community of Manawan, Que. since Oct. 11, 2010 (Meurtres et Disparitions Irrésolus du Quebec )

Each poster is in English, French, and an Indigenous language — for Luce, an important aspect of the campaign.

"It's very important that the language of the missing person is used," he said.

"On the posters, the phrases were chosen by the family, and it's phrases the victim is saying to the public."

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Ka’nhehsí:io Deer is Kanien’kehá:ka journalist from Kahnawake, Que. She is currently a reporter with CBC Indigenous covering communities across Quebec.

now