Daughter fuming after MMIWG inquiry staff cancels mom’s flight - APTN NewsAPTN News

Daughter fuming after MMIWG inquiry staff cancels mom’s flight

Kathleen Martens
An Iqaluit woman is furious after national inquiry staff suddenly cancelled her mother’s trip to Yellowknife this week – without telling her.

“She said, ‘Janet, I feel so ashamed. It’s just like when I was in residential school,’” Janet Brewster said in a telephone interview from Iqaluit about her mother Betty Brewster.

Betty was scheduled to help her sister Kathy Meyer testify about her missing daughter Angela Meyer, 22, on Tuesday.

She said Betty was “embarrassed” when First Air sent her home from the Iqaluit airport Tuesday saying there was no ticket for her.

There had been a ticket for the 70-year-old, but bad weather cancelled the initial flight Sunday to Yellowknife for the public hearings of the National Inquiry in Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls.

Betty Brewster. Family photo.

Bad weather hit the Nunavut capital again on Monday and Brewster couldn’t get off the ground.

Someone from the inquiry then cancelled the ticket Tuesday, Janet said, without informing the family.

An inquiry spokesperson said a staff member made a decision about travel based on problems with the weather and the fact Meyer’s testimony would have been completed Tuesday before Betty could arrive.

See related: Lack of mental health care a factor in missing woman’s disappearance: Family

Meyer said she has spoken to her sister by phone and, at this time, it was a problem they were unable to process after the high emotion of Tuesday.

“She is an elder with a bad back and stress makes the pain worse. But she wants to come and I’m still hoping they’ll get her here,” said Meyer.

See more from the final day of the national inquiry hearings in Yellowknife


Janet wanted more, saying her mother deserved an explanation and even an apology.

“I can’t even explain how it feels to see my mom go through that,” she said, noting an inquiry employee contacted her Wednesday after she complained about what happened on social media.

“I know to some people it’s just a cancelled flight. But we opened our minds and bodies into going there and being part of that process,” said Janet.


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3 Responses to “Daughter fuming after MMIWG inquiry staff cancels mom’s flight”

  1. isabelydancer00@yahoo.com'
    Isabel January 26, 2018 at 2:30 pm #

    What an ordeal stacked on top of yet another. While it is evident that sommeone mmade a huge error in cancelling it does not negate how shocked and stunned this elder and fammily mmust feel. As a Nisga’a First Nations femmale having lived at the Noethern West coast of the Highway Trail of Tears mmy heart goes out to you.

    • 4Dakota.Redman@gmail.com'
      Audrey Redman January 26, 2018 at 7:45 pm #

      My thoughts and prayers are with you. This is an example of the pain we suffer because we continue to rely on those who have the $ but not the heart that cares. First Nations, Inuit and Metis people are capable, able and knowledgeable about our experience, culture and traditions. We’re still going along with a damaged system.

  2. Caroldunphy53@gmail.com'
    Carol January 26, 2018 at 2:12 am #

    This is just disgusting. Get her out on next available flight just because her sister may have been able to speak doesn’t mean the process is over. This opens so many wounds.
    Shame on the Inquiry.