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NCAI remains hopeful on legislation to protect Indian women





The National Congress of American Indians remains hopeful for legislation to protect American Indian and Alaska Native women from violence.

American Indian and Alaska Native women suffer from the highest rates of domestic violence, rapes and sexual assaults. The majority of the offenders are non-Indian, a situation that has prompted legislation to recognize tribal jurisdiction over non-Indians.

But Republican leaders in the House balked at including such provisions in H.R.4970, a bill to reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act. The landscape, however, appears to be shifting following the introduction of H.R.6625, the Violence Against Indian Women Act, by four Republicans, along with a letter from 10 Republicans urging action on the issue.

“We believe there is a path to bipartisan agreement on the tribal provisions of VAWA. We remain hopeful that a comprehensive VAWA bill can and will move forward before this session of Congress ends,” Jacqueline Pata, the executive director of NCAI, said in a press release.

House Republican leaders, namely Rep. Eric Cantor (R-Virginia), have been negotiating with Vice President Joe Biden on a possible compromise, according to news reports.

Get the Story:
House GOPers pressure leadership on Violence Against Women Act (Salon 12/12)
Awaiting a ‘fiscal cliff’ deal, lawmakers pass other legislation (The Washington Post 12/12)
Violence Against Women Act: John Boehner, Eric Cantor Pressured By Republicans To Act (The Huffington Post 12/11)

Related Stories:
Opinion: Native women still waiting on Congress to take action (12/12)
Rep. Darrell Issa introduces Violence Against Indian Women Act (12/4)
NCAI optimistic on a land-into-trust fix, VAWA during lame-duck (11/09)