In some areas, Native American women face murder rates that are more than 10 times the national average
Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.) cosponsored a bipartisan resolution to recognize May 5, 2022 as the National Day of Awareness for Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls. Introduced by Senators Jon Tester (D-Mont.) and Steve Daines (R-Mont.), the resolution brings awareness to the violence that Native communities continue to face and commemorates the lives of missing and murdered Native women whose cases are documented and undocumented in public records and the media.
“Native women and girls continue to face outrageous levels of violence and minimal resources,” said Senator Cortez Masto. “I’m proud to support this resolution to spread awareness of this crisis and do more to support our Native communities. I’ll keep working to protect vulnerable communities in Nevada and across the country.”
American Indians and Alaska Natives are 2.5 times more likely to experience violent crimes and at least 2 times more likely to experience rape or sexual assault compared to any other group of people in the U.S. In some Tribal communities, American Indian women face murder rates that are more than 10 times the national average, according to a study commissioned by the Department of Justice. In 2017, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that homicide was the sixth leading cause of death for American Indian and Alaska Native women between 1 and 44 years of age.
Senator Cortez Masto is one of the strongest champions for Native Americans in the Senate. This week, she led Senators Tester and Murkowski in pushing the administration to implement their laws to improve interagency coordination of violent crime prevention, create standard guidelines on responding to crimes against Native women, and increase data collection about those crimes. The senator has also repeatedly called on the administration to do more to address the epidemic of violence against Native women and girls, including securing federal funding to protect Native communities, urging the administration to put together a plan to address this issue, and requesting the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to investigate the federal response to this crisis.