Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.) issued the following statement in reaction to Attorney General Barr’s announcement that the Department of Justice will put forward a framework and strategy to address the crisis of Missing and Murdered Native Americans. The framework is inspired by U.S. Senators Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) and Cortez Masto’s Savanna’s Act.
“I’m pleased that the Department of Justice has taken this important step to address the epidemic of missing and murdered indigenous women. Yet we need this framework to have the force of law. I’ve introduced two critical pieces of legislation – Savanna’s Act and the Not Invisible Act – to require federal agencies to coordinate responses to this crisis and to ensure that we have the critical data to stop it. I’m pleased these bill passed out of the Indian Affairs Committee this week, and I call on Senator McConnell to bring up these vital and bipartisan pieces of legislation immediately when the Senate returns.”
Earlier this year, Senator Cortez Masto joined with Senator Murkowski to reintroduce Savanna’s Act in the Senate. This landmark legislation will help combat the epidemic of murdered and missing Native women and girls by improving the federal government’s response to this crisis.
In April, Senator Cortez Masto and Senator Murkowski introduced another critical bill to work in conjunction with Savanna’s Act. The Not Invisible Act will engage law enforcement, tribal leaders, federal partners, and service providers in the response and improve coordination across federal agencies.