Earlier today (May 4, 2022,) President Joe Biden issued a Presidential proclamation, designating May 5, 2022 Missing Or Murdered Indigenous Persons Awareness Day.

Mr. Biden issued a similar declaration for May 5, 2021.

Advertisement

The Biden/Harris Administration along with local leaders across the country including Arizona Legislative District 18 State Representative Jennifer Jermaine, have worked tirelessly to uncover the sad truths about the plight of missing or murdered indigenous persons including those who used to attend Indian Boarding Schools.

In his proclamation, the President stated:

“For generations, Indigenous persons, including American Indians, Alaska Natives and Native Hawaiians, have been forced to mourn a missing or murdered loved one without the answers and support they deserve. On Missing or Murdered Indigenous Persons Awareness Day, we remember these victims and their families, and commit to working with Tribal Nations and Native communities to achieve justice and healing…”

“…My Administration understands that Native people, particularly survivors of violence, know best what their communities need to feel safe. That is why we must work hand in hand with Tribal partners through each phase of the justice system to create solutions that are victim-centered, trauma-informed, and culturally appropriate.

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. As a Nation, we must answer that call and work together to achieve the promise of America for all Americans…”

In the proclamation, the President noted some of the efforts the Biden/Harris Administration has taken to help improve safety for Indigenous People including:

  • Enacting provisions of the renewal of the Violence Against Women Act that “expands 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 and supports the development of a pilot project to enhance access to safety for survivors in Alaska Native villages.”
  • Issuing an Executive Order that “directs Federal agencies to improve public safety and criminal justice for Native Americans and to address the crisis of missing or murdered Indigenous people. This includes implementing a coordinated Federal law enforcement strategy that supports Tribal and other local law enforcement efforts. It also strengthens prevention, early intervention, and survivor services while improving data collection, analysis, and information sharing.”

Responding to the President’s proclamation, LD 18 Representative Jermaine commented:

“I am grateful for President Biden’s and Secretary Haaland’s commitment to the issue of missing and murdered Indigenous people. With our Tribal and federal partners, Arizona has begun to move on MMIP and we will continue to reform our systems and work towards solving these horrible crimes.”

Ms. Jermaine also relayed that there will be a Missing and Murdered Indigenous People (MMIP) Awareness event at the Arizona State Capitol tomorrow from 2:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. on May 5, 2022.

 

 

 

Advertisement