Cathy Merrick Elected First Female Manitoba Grand Chief

Merrick’s historic win ends toxic allegations of sexual misconduct against women in the organization

Last night, Cathy Merrick, former Chief of Pimicikamak Cree Nation, Cross Lake, in Northern Manitoba, won the election for the newest Manitoba Grand Chief. Incumbent Grand Chief Arlen Dumas was removed for the accusations of multiple sexual abuse claims earlier in the year. Merrick beat six former Chiefs and accomplished candidates, winning on the second ballot with 37 out of 59 votes to become the first Woman in 35 years of Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs to lead the organization.

Merrick will use the position to address the seldom present elder care, mental health resources, and other health-care services for First Nations across Manitoba. Such issues have been made worse by COVID-19. She further wishes to stimulate success in First Nations people, providing students with better education, more opportunities, and better resources. 

“I will work hard for our people. I will work hard for our nations to be represented in the assembly.” Said Merrick

“Congratulations to the first-ever female grand chief of AMC, Cathy Merrick, on her election today. I look forward to working with you!” Said, Manitoba Premier Heather Stefanson

Merrick’s win will increase the number of women holding positions of power and influence in Manitoba; she will represent Manitoba’s Indigenous community on the national stage. A stage that just saw the election of RoseAnne Archibald, the first-ever female National Grand Chief of the Assembly of First Nations.

Image source AMC Twitter feed