Spokane, Washington – In a May 4, 2022 Proclamation, President Joseph R. Biden proclaimed today, May 5, 2022, as Missing and Murdered Indigenous Persons Awareness Day. In doing so, the President called on all Americans to support Tribal governments and Tribal communities’ efforts to increase awareness of missing and murdered Indigenous People.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Washington fully supports these efforts, and our Office reaffirms its commitment to each of the Tribes in Eastern Washington to address this significant issue. “Recognizing and honoring missing and murdered Indigenous people is a top priority for the Department of Justice, and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Washington,” U.S. Attorney Vanessa R. Waldref stated. “It remains unacceptable that Native Americans experience some of the highest rates of violence in the country, a situation that is all the more tragic in light of the generations of trauma already suffered by Indigenous people.”
“The Department of Justice and the U.S. Attorney’s Office will continue to address the causes and symptoms of this difficult problem.” U.S. Attorney Waldref continued, “During the past year, the Department has sought the help and input from Tribal leaders and Tribal communities to develop sustainable protocols to help our communities respond when a tribal member is reported missing. The U.S. Attorney’s Office supports these initiatives, and we are fully committed to working closely with Tribal leaders, law enforcement partners, and community stakeholders to implement Savanna’s Act, as we strive to keep Eastern Washington communities safe and strong for everyone.”
If you or someone you know has information about a missing or murdered Indigenous person, please contact the FBI Seattle Field Office by calling (206) 622-0460 or by visiting tips.fbi.gov.