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An Online Resource Library on Gender-Based Violence.

Press Release: Why the Lack of Safe Housing Leads to High Rates of Missing & Murdered Indigenous Women

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

New report highlights connections - Press Briefing

WHO: Local Minnesota-based Native Advocates

WHAT:  Anti-Violence Agencies to Announce Findings of Report on Housing, Domestic Violence & Impact on Native Women & Girls

WHEN: Friday, February 14, 2020, 9:00 am to 10:00 am CST

WHERE: Mino Oski Ain Dah Yung, 769 University Ave., St. Paul, MN 55131

WHY: The need for safe, affordable, accessible, and stable housing is one of the most pressing concerns for American Indian and Alaska Native survivors of gender-based violence. Domestic and sexual violence are the leading causes of homelessness for women and children, particularly among the American Indian and Alaska Native population.

American Indian and Alaska Native women experience severe rates of violence in their lifetimes:

  • 56% have experienced physical violence by an intimate partner;
  • 48% have experienced stalking;
  • 66% have experienced psychological aggression by an intimate partner;
  • 56% have experienced sexual violence;
  • Of the women who experienced sexual violence, 96% of them were victimized by at least one non-Indian perpetrator.

In addition, a study on Native women and sex trafficking found that 98% of the women interviewed that had been prostituted and sex trafficked were either currently experiencing or had experienced homelessness. These facts on violence against AI/AN directly connect to the epidemic of Missing & Murdered Indigenous Women (MMIW) and to the sex trafficking of Native women and girls.

The press briefing will focus on the connection of housing instability, gender-based violence and Native women and girls. The new report, National Workgroup on Safe Housing for American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) Survivors of Gender-Based Violence: Lessons Learned by Caroline LePorte, highlights the intersection of gender-based violence, housing instability and its impact on Native women, their families and communities including recommendations for practice, policy and research. The report, Colonization, Homelessness and the Prostitution and Sex Trafficking of Native Women by Christine Stark and Eileen Hudon, will also be shared during the press conference.

Representatives from local, state and national branches of government including Minnesota Representative Mary Kunesh-Podein, Native advocates and activists, and local, state and national anti-violence organizations, such as StrongHearts Native Helpline and the Minnesota Indian Women Sexual Assault Coalition, will be present during the press briefing. Individuals will be available to answer media questions.

Following the press briefing, a March to honor Missing & Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls, Two Spirit, Transgender, Relatives will take place from 11:00 am to 2:00 pm beginning at the Minneapolis Indian Center at 1530 East Franklin Ave., Minneapolis. For more information on the March, call 651-646-4800.