MultDems Call to Action: support HB 2625

missing & murdered Aboriginal women.jpg
Source: https://cjsrnews.squarespace.com/moccasin/2015/2/26/missing-murdered-aboriginal-women-needs-inquiry

Summary

The Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women (MMIW) bill would create a study on how to increase criminal justice resources for missing and murdered indigenous women.

Take action!

Contact your state legislators and ask them to support HB 2625!

Background                  

Murder is the third leading cause of death among American Indian and Alaska Native women, yet there is no adequate system in place of reporting and investigating these deaths.

In 2016, there were 5,712 cases of MMIW, but a Nov. 2018 study by the Urban Indian Health Institute only 116 of them were logged in the Dept. of Justice database.

One of the reasons for the difficulty in obtaining correct information on the actual number of missing and murdered Indigenous women is because of an issue called racial misclassification: the incorrect coding of an individual’s race or ethnicity. An example of this is American Indian individuals being incorrectly coded as white.

All of this is to emphasize that there is a need for changes to public information systems on missing people, specifically Native and Indigenous women, while also gaining cooperion from law enforcement agencies to strengthen accurate reporting, identification, and investigation of missing Native community members.

Washington state recently passed a MMIW bill, and we hope to follow their lead on taking the first step to establishing a comprehensive reporting system here in Oregon.

What HB2625 Does

HB 2625 would direct the Department of State Police to study how to increase criminal justice resources relating to missing Native American women in Oregon. The study should determine how to increase criminal justice protective and investigative resources for reporting, identification, and investigation of missing Native American women in this state.

Through this study, the department shall:

  • Consult with the Commission of Indian Services
  • Convene meetings with tribal and local law enforcement partners, federally recognized tribes, and urban Native American organizations to determine scope of problem and find ways to create partnerships to increase reporting, identification and investigation of missing Native American women in Oregon with the US Dept of Justice
  • Determine ways to increase information sharing and coordination of resources to focus on reporting/identification/investigation of missing Native American women in Oregon