Law | National | Politics

NCAI President Keel calls on Congress to protect Indian women

National Congress of American Indians President Jefferson Keel called on Congress to protect American Indian and Alaska Native women from violence.

In the State of Indian Nations speech, Keel praised the Senate for passing S.47, a bill to reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act. The measure recognizes tribal jurisdiction over non-Indians who commit domestic violence offenses on reservations.

“Congress must allow tribes, like all governments, to protect their own people and surrounding communities, from brutality,” Keel said on Thursday.

A similar version of the bill faced opposition in the House during the last session of Congress. Jackie Johnson Pata, NCAI's executive director, was confident of success this time around.

"I believe if we go to a vote on this issue in the House we will win," Pata said yesterday.

Get the Story:
NCAI Calls For Action On Violence Against Women Act (KUNM 2/14)
Native American leader calls on Congress to pass Violence Against Women Act in annual address (AP 2/14)
Tribes hail greater sovereignty, but still have a long way to go (Cronkite News 2/14)

Relevant Links:
Video | Audio | Text of Speech | Sen. Cantwell Response

Related Stories:
NCAI President Jefferson Keel to give State of Indian Nations (2/12)

Join the Conversation