Washington Lawmaker Unveils New Bill To Address Missing And Murdered Indigenous Women
Murdered and missing Indigenous women and girls are the focus of a bill introduced in the Washington House of Representatives on Friday.
Last year, Washington Rep. Gina Mosbrucker, a Republican from Goldendale,sponsored a bill that calls on the Governor’s office and Washington State Patrol to find a way to count every murdered and/or missing Indigenous woman in the state.
A final report isn’t due out until this June, but Mosbrucker says she doesn’t want to wait.
“What we were concerned about was that, one, we would lose awareness on this issue, and two, that there’s more and more women missing all the time and currently missing,” Mosbrucker said.
So, she has introduced a new bill that would add two liaisons to the Washington State Patrol to improve government-tribal relations. Mosbrucker also wants to set up a task force and find a way to streamline how missing persons cases are handled in the state.
Mosbrucker said the bill has an emergency clause that eliminates a 90-day waiting period before the new law could take effect.
The State Patrol and representatives from the Governor’s office have been on a fact-finding mission, hosting meetings statewide in Native communities and in Seattle over the last year.
“The things that are in this legislation are things that we learned on that tour,” Mosbrucker said.
“[We wanted] to make sure we were addressing the concerns of the urban population, which the numbers are cited over 70 percent have moved from the reservations,” Mosbrucker said.
According to a report from the Urban Indian Health Institute, Tacoma and Seattle rank among the top 10 cities nationwide with the highest number of murdered and missing Indigenous women and girls. As a state, Washington overall ranks third highest in the report.
Copyright 2019 Northwest News Network
In their own words: Rosalie Fish
For over 30 years, Native American Heritage Month has been federally recognized. Northwest Public Broadcasting reporters are interviewing Indigenous people throughout the region to learn what they think about the month and what they want people to understand about their culture and who they are. Reporter Lauren Gallup spoke with Rosalie Fish, a University of Washington student and athlete, who is using her platform to raise awareness of the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women crisis. As the month ends, the recognition does not and we continue to publish these conversations and stories to inspire more engagement and understanding. Continue Reading In their own words: Rosalie Fish
WSP Launches Missing Indigenous Person Alert System
Posters with images of missing or murdered indigenous people were displayed at the MMIW/P Healing Gathering in Seattle in May. Credit: Johanna Bejarano. Read The Washington State Patrol (WSP) officially… Continue Reading WSP Launches Missing Indigenous Person Alert System
Yakima High School Student Wins Congressional Art Competition
Silenced by Morgan Greene Listen (Runtime :46) Read A Yakima A.C. Davis High School senior has won a Congressional Art Competition with her depiction of a woman and the symbol… Continue Reading Yakima High School Student Wins Congressional Art Competition