The NDP’s status of women critic is applauding the Feds for putting a plan in motion for a long-anticipated national inquiry into missing and murdered indigenous women.

Sheila Malcolmson, who is also the MP for Nanaimo-Ladysmith, says she would like to see the inquiry look at systemic causes of violence against women such as poverty, racism and crime.

She says ministers will meet with the families of missing and murdered indigenous women this week in Ottawa.

Indigenous Affairs Minister Carolyn Bennett announced the first phase of the inquiry on Tuesday on Parliament Hill. It will include determining the objectives, focus and parameters.

The actual inquiry itself, which is phase two, could be announced next spring.