Fairbanks Daily News Miner: Dunleavy, Murkowski recognize Missing and Murdered Indigenous People Awareness Day

Alaska Gov. Mike Dunleavy and U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski both issued statements Friday recognizing the National Day of Awareness for Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women.

 “Today, on May 5th, my heart is with the many families who have lost a loved one to violence and all those who have been affected by the crisis of missing and murdered Indigenous women and people. We honor the memory of your loved ones who are no longer with you in you,” Murkowski in a released statement. “I join in raising awareness about an injustice that was once invisible. Our federal, state, and tribal governments must work together to ensure the care and safety of all Native peoples.”

 The U.S. Senate unanimously passed Senate Resolution 194 this week, designating May 5, 2023, as the National Day of Awareness for Missing and Murdered Native Women and Girls.

 The governor’s office released Dunleavy’s proclamation, which cites the statistic that in 2021, Alaska reported 229 cases of missing and murdered Indigenous persons — 149 missing and 80 murdered.

 “ ... I, Mike Dunleavy, do hereby proclaim May 5, 2023 as Missing and Murdered Indigenous Peoples Day in Alaska, and encourage all Alaskans to recognize the elevated rates of missing and murdered Indigenous persons and support law enforcement, victim advocacy, and the efforts of Alaska Native Tribes to work with state, local, and other entities working together toward solutions,” the decree reads.

 The proclamation states that Alaska Natives experience disproportionate rates of domestic violence, sexual assault, and other violent crimes, according to the Indian Law and Order Commission’s 2013 report. Additionally, it states that Alaska Native women are overrepresented in the domestic violence victim population by 250%, and even though Alaska Natives comprise of 19% of the population in Alaska, they represent 47% of the reported rape victims in the state.

By:  Staff Report
Source: Fairbanks Daily News-Miner