Indigenous Canadian woman, 37, films as cruel hospital staff taunt and call her 'stupid as hell' before dying in agony
AN INDIGENOUS Canadian woman died this week after hospital staff taunted her in her final agonizing moments, calling her “stupid as hell.”
Joyce Echaquan, 37, passed away on Monday after she was admitted to a hospital in the city of Joliette in Quebec for stomach pain on Saturday.
According to CBC, Echaquan filmed what happened to her before she died in a Facebook Live video.
“You’re stupid as hell,” a nurse tells Echaquan in French, per a translation from the news outlet.
The mom of seven kids can be seen writhing in pain as she calls for help.
Another hospital worker tells Echaquan that she’s made life choices and questions what her children would say if they saw her in pain like that.
Husband Carol Dubé told CBC he doesn’t know why hospital employees were degrading his wife with what's been criticized as racist epithets.
"I have seven children who find themselves without a mother," he said. "I am sad. I am so sad."
The Native Women's Association of Canada said in a statement: "Joyce Echaquan went to the hospital for medical help.
"Instead, she was told she’s stupid, only good for sex and she would be better off dead as she pleaded for help before dying."
Mary Hannaburg, of Quebec Native Women, said the footage taken by Echaquan in her final moments is "very hard thing to hear and to listen to."
"The statements that are made are not going to be tolerated. Those are of a racist nature,” she said.
"We will not tolerate racism in any given form toward Indigenous women."
CBC reported on Tuesday that Quebec Premier François Legault said the situation was "not acceptable."
Legault also said that one of the nurses who responded Echaquan has been fired.
"I really don't think that we have this kind of way of dealing with First Nations people in our hospitals in Quebec,” he said.
“Yes, there is some racism in Quebec. We're working on that.”
Echaquan's relatives reportedly said the mother had a history of heart problems.
The mom apparently said she thought she was being given too much morphine.
Ghislain Picard, head of the Assembly of First Nations Quebec-Labrador, told CBC that what happened to the late mother is part of "too long of a series of dramas experienced by Indigenous women in public services."
"I don't know if she was a victim of abuse, but I do know that she was a victim of racism by the nurses who had to care for her," he said.
Picard added: "We know this because there is a video of this tragedy, and you can clearly hear the nurses insulting Joyce because she is Atikamekw, because she is Indigenous."
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