July 27, 2022
Resource Spotlight: Violence Against Indigenous Women and Girls
The World Health Organization reports that violence against women is a global public health problem. This includes physical, sexual, and psychological abuse by intimate partners as well as non-partner violence and coerced sexual violence.
One particularly alarming crisis is the violence experienced by Indigenous women and girls of North America. American Indian and Alaska Native women experience higher rates of violence than non-Native women. This issue is further compounded by the difficulties over the years in bringing non-Native perpetrators to justice due to the complexities of tribal courts versus federal court jurisdiction in these cases; this is a concern because interracial violence is more common than intraracial violence in Native American communities. Progress has been made this year with President Biden’s Reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act which includes the expansion of Tribal courts criminal jurisdiction over non-Native perpetrators of stalking, child abuse, sex trafficking and sexual assault.
This change, along with more coverage on the topic, will hopefully make a difference in Native communities where many cases of missing or murdered women and girls remain unsolved.
UW Indigenous-Focused Resources
A Broken Trust (2019). “A harrowing deep dive into the racial group most likely to be raped in the U.S. - American Indian and Alaska Native women...”
U.S. Administration for Children & Families: Keeping us Whole : Preventing Missing and Murdered Indigenous People - podcast series
Local, State and National Resources
Indian Health Service: The Federal Health Program for American Indians and Alaska Natives: Intimate Partner Violence Prevention.
Microsoft Feature Stories: A Newspaper shines a light on missing Indigenous women with the help of technology. (2022 article)
WomenSpirit Coalition. Washington State Native American Coalition Against Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault.
Harvard International Review article: Indigenous Women: The Invisible Victims of Femicide in Mexico. (2020)
General Resources on Violence Against Women