WASHINGTON – Senator John Hoeven (R-ND), chairman of the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, today announced that the Senate has passed a resolution he cosponsored designating May 5th as the National Day of Awareness for Missing and Murdered Native Women and Girls.
“The epidemic of missing and murdered Native women and girls has tragically affected families and communities throughout Indian Country, including those in North Dakota,” said Hoeven. “By standing together and raising awareness, we can promote solutions to prevent and combat the exploitation and violence that many Native women face. This national day of awareness shines a light on this crisis, commemorates the lives lost, and signifies a bipartisan effort to advance critical protections for Native women and girls.”
The resolution is sponsored by Senator Steve Daines (R-MT) and cosponsored by Senators Jon Tester (D-MT), Tom Udall (D-NM), Cory Gardner (R-CO), Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND), Mike Crapo (R-ID), Mike Rounds (D-SD), James Lankford (R-OK), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Patty Murray (R-SD), and Ron Wyden (D-OR).
As chairman of the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, Hoeven has led the Senate in enhancing tribal public safety and strengthening resources for Native American victims of violence. The senator recently secured a provision to require a three percent set-aside from the Crime Victims Fund (CVF) be provided directly to Indian tribes – amounting to nearly $132 million per year for tribal victim assistance resources.
Last year, Hoeven convened multiple committee hearings on pressing tribal public safety issues, including a North Dakota field hearing on Native youth safety and an oversight hearing on combatting human trafficking in Indian Country.
Additionally, Hoeven has introduced legislation to further expand tribal victim assistance resources and reauthorize several critical public safety and tribal justice programs. The senator’s Securing Urgent Resources Vital to Indian Victim Empowerment (SURVIVE) Act (S. 1870), which cleared the committee in December 2017, would create a five percent tribal set-aside from the CVF and enable tribes to tailor victim assistance programs, services and infrastructure to meet community needs. Hoeven’s Tribal Law and Order Reauthorization and Amendments Act (S. 1953), which passed the committee in February 2018, would reauthorize several public safety and justice programs, improve data collection on human trafficking, and strengthen protections for Native youth.