Law | National | Politics

Audio: Conference call on bill to combat violence against women

The Department of Justice and the White House hosted a conference call this afternoon to discuss a bill that will help tribes and the federal government combat violence against American Indian and Alaska Native women.

The proposed bill will:
• recognize tribal concurrent criminal jurisdiction over Indians and non-Indians to "investigate, prosecute, convict, and sentence" them for violence against Indian women. Only tribes whose court systems provide certain constitutional guarantees can exercise such jurisdiction over non-Indians.
• clarify that tribes can exercise civil jurisdiction to issue and enforce protection orders against Indian and non-Indians. This provision addresses a federal court case that said a tribe lacked such authority.
• amend the Federal Criminal Code to provide ten-year, five-year and one-year sentences for violence against Indian women.

The Obama administration will seek to include the proposal in legislation to reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act this year.

Associate Attorney General Tom Perrelli of DOJ; Kimberly Teehee, the White House Senior Policy Advisor for Native American Affairs; and Lynn Rosenthal, the White House Advisor on Violence Against Women, spoke on the call. You can download the audio below.

Conference Call:
MP3: Bill to combat violence against American Indian and Alaska Native women (July 21, 2011)

Related Stories:
Obama administration plans bill to fight violence against women (7/21)
Harold Monteau: Somewhere in Indian Country, domestic violence (7/18)
Karonienhawi Thomas: Saying no more to violence against women (7/18)
Ray Cook: Taking a stand to put end to violence in Indian Country (7/15)
Audio from Senate Indian Affairs Committee hearing on women (7/14)

Join the Conversation