Julie Van Dusen

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Julie Van Dusen is a Canadian journalist who works for CBC News and is seen mainly during The National.

Van Dusen graduated with a degree in French literature and studied communications at the University of Ottawa. Van Dusen comes from a family of journalists as five of her siblings, including Peter Van Dusen, as well as her father, Thomas Van Dusen, are also reporters. After graduating from university, she began working for the Privy Council Office then as a researcher for FP News Service and Maclean's magazine as a reporter and researcher for the Parliament Hill bureau. Van Dusen began working for the CBC in 1983 at CBC Ottawa. She became a CBC Television news reporter in 1988.

She is married to former Ottawa city councillor Richard Cannings.

Controversy[edit]

On June 29, 2017, Van Dusen attended a press conference held by a group of family members of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls (MMIWG).[1] Van Dusen questioned speakers about Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s work with the Indigenous community and one activist responded by referencing one of the many unsolved deaths of young Indigenous teenagers in Thunder Bay,[2] Van Dusen argued, “but how can he be blamed for that? You don’t think that anything he’s doing is helping the situation? Is he an improvement over Stephen Harper? Talk about his record.”[3]

The family members of victims were greatly insulted by Van Dusen's orders as well as her tone and noted disinterest in reporting on the deaths of the Indigenous youths. Moose Cree First Nation Elder Sophie McKeown responded, "You do not speak to us that way. We are human beings." McKeown asked Van Dusen to leave the press conference repeatedly, however Van Dusen refused, inciting activist Jocelyn Wabano-Iahtail to respond in Cree, "Stop, I want you to stop being disrespectful to us. You have been doing this for a long time now, you are good at being disrespectful to us...The moment we have our voice and our backbone, you want to shut us down. And you think you are privileged to disrespect us the moment we tell you because of your colonial mindset and your colonial way of being. Your white privilege, your white fragility. You can't take our truth."[3][4]

Prime Minister of Canada Justin Trudeau issued a statement that same day stating, "We recognize that over the past decades, generations, indeed centuries, Canada has failed Indigenous Peoples."[5] The fallout from this event was occurring simultaneously to one in Canada's north where the "British media weren’t impressed when Prince Charles and his wife Camilla had trouble controlling their laughter during a traditional throat singing ceremony in Iqaluit" [6]

References[edit]

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