Some tribes are advocating for a bill that would grant tribal police a state peace officer status and the ability to enforcement California’s criminal laws.
SACRAMENTO, Calif — Monday was day one of the second annual Missing and Murdered Indigenous People Summit and Day of Action.
In California, more than half of attacks on indigenous women are done by non-native people.
Leaders of local tribes joined with law enforcement, including state Attorney General Rob Bonta, to talk about solutions on violence, housing and healthcare.
California has the fifth highest number of missing and murdered indigenous people cases. Many of them involve young women and girls. Research shows the murders of indigenous women are seven times less likely to be solved.
“A lot of times, we grew up breaking misconceptions of stereotypes of who we are as California Indian people. Our music, our songs, our housing, people still think that because of what’s been in the motion picture industry, that’s what all Indian people do. We’re still breaking that misconception,” said Asm. James Ramos, who is also the California Native American Legislative Caucus chair.
Ramos has been working to pass solutions to the Missing and Murdered Indigenous People (MMIP) crisis. That includes a “Feather Alert” system that was signed into law just over a year ago.
He said when someone goes missing from a Federal Indian Reservation, tribal community in California, the Feather Alert can be used in coordination with CHP and local authorities.
The 2024 summit was held at the Safe Credit Union Convention Center in Sacramento. Day 2 is scheduled for Tuesday.
Tribes are advocating for a bill that would grant tribal police a state peace officer status and the ability to enforcement California’s criminal laws.
According to the National Crime Information Center, there are about 1,500 American Indian and Alaskan Native Missing Persons.