Dozens gathered in Montreal's Cabot Square on Saturday to honour the lives of four Indigenous women in Winnipeg and show support for the city's urban Indigenous population.

The Native Women's Shelter of Montreal (NWSM) and its Iskweu Project organized the event for Marcedes Myran, Morgan Harris, and Rebecca Contois, in addition to an unidentified woman being referred to as Mashkode Bizhiki'ikwe (Buffalo Woman).

Jeremy Skibicki has been charged with first-degree murder in the four women's deaths, and police in Winnipeg said this week that it was not feasible not search the Prairie Green Landfill to look for the women's remains though that is where they are believed to be. The government of Manitoba said it would participate in an Indigenous-led oversight committee on the feasibility of searching landfills for missing women.

"Winnipeg Police services' refusal to search the landfill is another way of them saying - we aren't interested in reconciliation," said Iskweu coordinator Tanisha Gallichon. "I have trouble believing that if these women were white, the landfill search wouldn't already be wrapping up."

Drums, speeches, and actions of solidarity highlighted the Montreal rally and red dresses were on display, a symbol of Canada's missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls.

"This is deplorable," said NWSM executive director Na'kuset. "We need to do more to protect Indigenous women and girls. I want Winnipeg to know we stand with them."

Na'kuset sees similarities between police behaviour in Winnipeg with local police forces, pointing to the 2019 Montreal police (SPVM) study that revealed officers topping people from visible minorities, including Indigenous women, far more frequently than they stop white people.

"The police have not addressed it at all," she said.

The shelter has been planning an open forum with local police to follow up with police to find ways to address some of the issues that, Nakuset said, have not been resolved.

She added that "predators" have entered shelters in Montreal to target Indigenous and other disadvantaged women in a similar fashion to the method allegedly used in Winnipeg that resulted in the women's deaths.

"That is the reality; the people that are most vulnerable are the ones that are targetted," she said. "When we complain, nothing happens; when atrocities happen to Indigenous women, nothing happens."