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Alberta social workers to help families of missing, murdered indigenous females

Alberta Minister of Indigenous Relations Richard Feehan is sworn in as a new cabinet minister in Edmonton Alta, on Monday, February 2, 2016. Feehan says the government will repeal a bill next week that is widely despised among First Nations and has already led to several lawsuits.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson

EDMONTON – Alberta has established a team of four social workers to help families of missing and murdered indigenous women and girls.

The three women and one man are to assist relatives in finding information about their loved ones from police, courts, the government and fatality inquiries.

Indigenous Relations Minister Richard Feehan says the team can also help connect families with elders and counsellors.

Such units are funded by the federal government as part of the inquiry into missing and murdered indigenous women that is to begin in Yukon later this month.

The Alberta social workers are indigenous and their job will include travel throughout the province, including to remote communities.

A government website says there were 206 aboriginal women murdered in Alberta between 1980 and 2012 — about 28 per cent of all female homicides during that time.

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