Runners from the Winnebago Tribe reach their destination, the Nebraska State Capitol in Lincoln, on January 29, 2018, after a two-day run from the reservation in the northeast part of the state. They ran to raise awareness about the plight of missing and murdered indigenous women. Photo by Kevin Abourezk $ti

Bill planned to address missing and murdered Native women

Two lawmakers in Nebraska are planning to introduce a bill to address missing and murdered Native women.

Sen. Tom Brewer, who is a citizen of the Oglala Sioux Tribe, and Sen. Patty Pansing Brooks will be sponsoring the bill, according to news reports. It will require law enforcement to track cases of missing Native women and to look at other instances of violence against Native women.

The bill, which is to be introduced at the Nebraska legislative session in early 2019, is modeled after a new state law in Washington. Tribes and urban Indian organizations there are being consulted on the first-ever study of missing Native women.

Nationally, members of Congress are seeking to do the same thing. A bill known as Savanna's Act, named for Savanna Marie Greywind, a young citizen of the Spirit Lake Nation who was brutally murdered last year, would require the Department of Justice to report, every year, on the " known statistics on missing and murdered Indian women in the United States."

The Senate Committee on Indian Affairs took testimony on S.1942 on October 25, 2017. It has not yet been scheduled for a business meeting, the next step in the legislative process, before possible passage in the Senate.

H.R.6545, the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2018, also includes provisions to address the crisis. The bill has not seen any movement in the Republican-controlled House. No Republicans have signed onto it either.

Read More on the Story
Nebraska Legislation Proposed To Investigate Violence Against Native Women (Lakota Country Times October 4, 2018)
Senators want to step up investigations of missing or abused Native women (The Lincoln Journal Star September 26, 2018)

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