May 5 proclaimed as Missing and Murdered Indigenous Persons Awareness Day
PIERRE, S.D. — On Thursday, Governor Kristi Noem proclaimed May 5 as Missing and Murdered Indigenous Persons Awareness Day in South Dakota.
Stated in the proclamation, 69 of the 102 missing persons in the state of South Dakota are indigenous persons. It also states that homicide is the third leading cause of death among Native American women.
“Today, we remember the Indigenous people who have been murdered and those who remain missing. We are committed to working with Tribal Nations to address this ongoing tragedy and help our fellow South Dakotans, the Oceti Sakowin people,” said Gov. Noem. “I encourage every South Dakotan to take a moment today to reflect on and help raise awareness for those within this vulnerable population. Let’s give them our help and support and continue to lift them and their families up in prayer.”
Various actions to address the ongoing crisis of missing and murdered indigenous people have been taken like establishing procedures for the investigation of missing and murdered indigenous persons, establishing a missing person clearinghouse, creating and fully funding the Office of Liaison for Missing and Murdered Indigenous People and working on state legislation for the last four years to better combat human trafficking.
“While these efforts have made a positive lasting impact, we have more work to do,” continued Gov. Noem. “Through further collaboration between our Tribal Nations, federal agencies, and the State of South Dakota, we will continue working to end this terrible crisis.”