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Speech by Attorney General Eric Holder at VAWA event

Attorney General Eric Holder spoke about tribal jurisdiction over non-Indians at an event at the White House today.

Department of Justice studies show that American Indian and Alaska Native women are victims of violence at rates far higher than any other racial or ethnic group. Most of the offenses are committed by non-Indians, according to the data.

"The Justice Department has also focused on – and worked to raise awareness about – the alarming rates of domestic violence in tribal communities, where violent crime rates are now two, four, and – in some cases – ten times the national average," Holder said.

The Obama administration supports S.1925, a bill to reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act. Provisions in the measure recognize tribal jurisdiction over non-Indians who commit domestic violence offenses in Indian Country.

"The status quo is – quite simply – unacceptable," Holder said. "That's why the Justice Department has proposed legislation – which is included in the VAWA Reauthorization Bill – that would close significant legal gaps and give Indian Country law enforcement officials, investigators, and prosecutors the tools they need to crack down on violence against women and girls."

Get the Remarks:
Attorney General Eric Holder Speaks at the White House Event on the Violence Against Women Act (DOJ 4/18)

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