May 5th, 2022 Last Updated on: May 5th, 2022
President Joe Biden has issued a Presidential Proclamation that May 5 will be Missing or Murdered Indigenous Persons Awareness Day.
Violence against Native Americans and Alaska Natives has far exceeded national averages. It's contributed to a full-blown crisis that's seen a staggering number of unsolved missing and murdered cases.
Today is Missing or Murdered Indigenous Peoples Awareness Day. I wish this day was obsolete and that we did not have to keep fighting year after year for Native people to be honored and respected. https://t.co/jpfZmqu2q3
— Secretary Deb Haaland (@SecDebHaaland) May 5, 2022
Approximately 1,500 American Indian and Alaska Native missing persons have been entered into the National Crime Information Center (NCIC) throughout the U.S. and approximately 2,700 cases of Murder and Nonnegligent Homicide Offenses have been reported to the Federal Government’s Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program. The Bureau of Indian Affairs estimates there are approximately 4,200 missing and murdered cases that have gone unsolved.
Missing or Murdered Indigenous Persons Awareness Day is today. I was proud to hold the first hearing in the House on this crisis in 2019. I won't stop fighting alongside Native communities to protect Indigenous people and end this violence.https://t.co/mW9ZGhUikE
— Ruben Gallego (@RepRubenGallego) May 5, 2022
Many people are wearing red today to raise awareness of the ongoing tragedies of abduction, homicide, trafficking and violence against Indigenous people nationwide.
President Biden said in a statement:
Our Nation’s failure to address this ongoing tragedy not only demeans the dignity of each Indigenous person who goes missing or is murdered — it undermines the humanity of us all. Today and every day, we must continue to stand up for Indigenous people, and we must never forget the thousands of unsolved cases that continue to cry out for justice and healing.
The announcement comes on the heels of the Violence Against Women Act Reauthorization Act of 2022, which President Biden signed into law in March. This law seeks to “expand special criminal jurisdiction of Tribal courts to cover non-Native perpetrators of sexual assault, child abuse, stalking, sex trafficking, and assaults on Tribal law enforcement officers on Tribal lands.”
“I call on all Americans and ask all levels of government to support Tribal governments and Tribal communities’ efforts to increase awareness of the issue of missing or murdered Indigenous persons through appropriate programs and activities…As a Nation, we must answer that call and work together to achieve the promise of America for all Americans.”
Here's the full statement from the White House on Missing or Murdered Indigenous Persons Awareness Day.
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