New indigenous film set to spark conversations on #MeToo

SYRACUSE, N.Y. — A new half-hour film created by Rematriation Magazine (an indigenous women’s online publication) features a group of cultural change-makers from the Guachichil de La Gran Chichimeca and Haudenosaunee territories encompasses a response to a recent movement under the title of “An Indigenous Response to #MeToo.”

The film premiered on Tuesday, April, 3 in Cavino’s Indigenous Women’s Lives class at Syracuse University and was produced by Indigenous Concepts Consulting for Rematriation Magazine with Executive Producer Michelle Schenandoah, Co-Producer is Neal Powless and Director Katsitsionni Fox.

As Chief Executive Officer and Editor in Chief of Rematriation Magazine, Schenandoah explained that the prevalence of sexual abuse in indigenous communities is an issue to be explored with cultural solutions.

“The #MeToo movement has taken the country by storm and this is why I asked a group of Indigenous people to come together to discuss what is – and what is not – going on so that we can extend the conversation into our communities and take control of the narrative,” said Schenandoah. “We are not part of the mainstream society; yet knowing how pervasive sexual abuse is in our communities, this film provides a backdrop to explore this issue in our own way.”

“In our own way” reflects within the film as well as the film features an all-Indigenous cast of community leaders and includes music by Joanne Shenandoah and “The Women’s Power Song” written by the Akwesasne Women Singers.

It is hoped to inspire group conversations about the topic of sexual harassment as well as to uncover culturally based solutions. Rematriation Magazine even sponsored the film to be free-of-charge to view for Indigenous nations, health care providers, educators, organizations, community members and those interested in joining the conversation.

The short is also a product of the discussion between more than 70 indigenous people from across Haudenosaunee territories during the 2018 launch of the magazine, and also tackles a mindful angle.

“The mainstream trend has been to outcast prominent men accused of sexual harassment, but what does #MeToo look like for Indigenous people?” asked Schenandoah. “There is no recourse for both men and women in the mainstream and there really hasn’t been much direction beyond this point for the movement. As Indigenous people, we’ve been working to address sexual abuse a lot longer than in the mainstream.”

“Acceptance of the mainstream does not have to be our response and it’s not the healthiest option for our communities; we have our culture to help guide us,” she said.

Any further information is available on their Facebook page:, or contact, 1-(315) 925-7191 to book screenings with discussions in your community.

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