National Day of Awareness for Missing & Murdered Indigenous Women & Girls
Senator Heidi Heitkamp Releases Social Media Guidance Package to senators, advocates, and organizations to help get them engaged - Hashtags #NotInvisible #MMIW #MMIWG
As the National Day of Awareness for Missing & Murdered Indigenous Women & Girls nears and taking place Saturday May 5th, Senator Heidi Heitkamp, D-ND, has released a”Social Media Guidance Package” to senators, advocates, and organizations to help get them engaged.
The social media effort will employ the social media hashtags #NotInvisible #MMIW #MMIWG.
Many on social media will also be wearing a red shirt or red ribbon in remembrance of the Missing & Murdered Indigenous Women & Girls and their families.
The information released by Heitkamp’s senate office is as follows:
Social Media Guidance:
“There is a crisis in Indian Country of missing and murdered Native American women that is too often unknown outside of Indian Country and too often forgotten. 84 percent of Native American women experience some kind of violence in their lifetime, and on some reservations, Native American women are murdered at 10 times the national average,” said Heitkamp in a release.
Senator Heitkamp says has been working to bring this issue out of the shadows through a social media campaign she launched in November using #NotInvisible.
“Only once we raise awareness about this epidemic can we then help implement solutions to stop these tragedies from occurring,” said Heitkamp.
The #NotInvisible social media effort builds on Senator Heitkamp’s bill, Savanna’s Act (S. 1942), that would be a starting point to tackle the crisis of missing and murdered indigenous women nationwide. The bill is named in honor of Savanna LaFontaine-Greywind, who was tragically killed in Fargo, North Dakota in August 2017.
“But you don’t need to have endorsed the bill to participate in this social media effort or to highlight the national day of awareness on Saturday,” said Heitkamp. “On Saturday, please help us raise awareness about this crisis on social media so we can then implement changes.”
Heitkamp’s office says there are several reasons for creating this awareness:
To raise awareness of the terrible tragedies of missing and murdered indigenous women and girls across the United States, and to highlight the statistics which show that indigenous women and girls are murdered or go missing at a disproportionate rate to the rest of the population.
Senator Heitkamp is asking citizens across the nation to “please message your senator’s work in addressing this crisis.”
How You Can Become Involved with the#NotInvisible, #MMIW, #MMIWG Hashtag
(MMIW and MMIWG added by Indian Country Today)
This Saturday, to help raise awareness, you can participate by taking a photo of yourself, (or senator) holding the included #NotInvisible hashtag sign or a plain sheet of paper with #NotInvisible typed out as in the examples below. If a selfie is not possible, you can also choose to include one of the attached graphics to share statistics about this crisis to help raise awareness about this issue.
On Wednesday, November 29th 2017, Senator Heitkamp led the social media hashtag effort #NotInvisible to raise awareness about the crisis of missing and murdered Native American women during National Native American Heritage Month.
Fellow senators, celebrities, organizations, journalists, and tribal leaders responded to the campaign by posting selfies along with the #NotInvisible hashtag. See a few past examples from November here:
Sen. Heidi Heitkamp on Twitter
“84% of Native American women experience violence in their lifetime & on some reservations, they are murdered at 10x the national avg. These women are #NotInvisible & we need to shine a light on these crimes. Join me today to show your support & help raise awareness. #MMIW”
Senator Jeff Merkley on Twitter
“84% of Native American women experience violence, and on some reservations, they're murdered at 10 times the national average. This is unacceptable. I’m cosponsoring @SenatorHeitkamp's Savanna’s Act to address this crisis. Join me in raising awareness. #NotInvisible”
Cory Booker on Twitter
“84% of Native American women have experienced violence in their lifetime. This is unacceptable. #NotInvisible”
Senator Jon Tester on Twitter
“84% of Native American women experience some kind of violence in their lifetimes. On some reservations, they are murdered at 10x the national average. I’m standing with advocates, families & Montanans like Ashley to say that these women are #NotInvisible https://t.co/LJLo1aLeQ7”
Tom Udall on Twitter
“More than 4 in 5 American Indian and Alaska Native women have experienced violence in their lifetime. These women are #NotInvisible. Join me today in sharing their stories, raising awareness and working to end this epidemic. https://t.co/g5iOOCK2EX”
Cindy McCain on Twitter
“· Standing by Native American women who experience staggering levels of violence and murder - they are #NotInvisible. Together we can raise awareness, show support, & work to combat these crimes. ·”
Julia Jones on Twitter
“84% of Native American women experience violence in their life. We can't let these stories go untold & for it to continue to happen. Help us raise awareness & show your support so we can start to address these challenges. #NotInvisible”
@rosariodawson on Instagram: “84% of Native American women experience violence in their lifetime. But outside of Indian Country, few people are aware of this…
96.1k Likes, 1,376 Comments - @rosariodawson on Instagram: “84% of Native American women experience violence in their lifetime. But outside of Indian Country,…”
Mark Ruffalo on Twitter
“84% of Native American women experience violence in their lifetime. But outside of Indian Country, few people are aware of this epidemic. It's time to raise awareness and show that these women are #NotInvisible.”
Vincent Schilling on Twitter
“84% of Native American women experience violence in their lifetime. They are #NotInvisible In October @SenatorHeitkamp introduced #SavannasAct, in honor of Savanna LaFontaine-Greywind, who was killed in Fargo ND. More about Savanna’s Act here - https://t.co/F5OXq9MrKz”
@NCAI1944 #notinvisible - Twitter Search
The latest Tweets on @NCAI1944 #notinvisible. Read what people are saying and join the conversation.
Troubling Statistics You Can Share on Social Media Via Tweets, Facebook and More
On some reservations, Native American women are murdered at a rate 10 times the national average. It’s time to address the disproportionate rate at which Native women experience violence or go missing, so they are #NotInvisible #MMIWG
84% of Native American women experience violence in their lifetime. But outside of Indian Country, few people are aware of this epidemic. It’s time to raise awareness and show that these women are #NotInvisible #MMIWG
There were 5,712 incidents of missing & murdered Native American women in 2016. We need to stand by the women who are experiencing staggering levels of violence and make them #NotInvisible #MMIWG
The crisis of missing & murdered indigenous women urgently needs more attention and #SavannasAct would help law enforcement crackdown on these horrible crimes. We must make sure women like Savanna are #NotInvisible
Online Materials / Social References and Facebook / Twitter Graphics
Three graphics that pair with each of the above statistics are attached to this email, in formats suitable for Twitter and Facebook/Instagram.
Twitter Card – Put The Link At The End Of Your Tweet
Another alternative to a #NotInvisible selfie or statistics graphic is to include a Twitter Card with your tweet. Include this link at the end of your tweet text and it will automatically pull in a Twitter card, though it will replace any attached graphics/photos so make sure to choose only one option:
(Tip: Twitter Cards will not appear in Tweetdeck, but are fully visible on Twitter’s site & mobile apps)
Primary initiative hashtag
#MMIW (Missing & Murdered Indigenous Women)
#MMIWG (Missing & Murdered Indigenous Women & Girls)
National Statistics & Sources
Violence Against American Indian and Alaska Native Women and Men
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5,712 known incidents of missing and murdered Indigenous women in 2016. (National Crime Information Center, requested data)
National Support Resources
National Indigenous Women's Resource Center
This project was supported by Grant Number 90EV0409 from the Administration on Children, Youth and Families, Family and Youth Services Bureau, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Its contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
StrongHearts Native Helpline – StrongHearts Native Helpline
A special thank you to the Family Violence Prevention and Services Program (FVPSA) for providing immense support for the development of the StrongHearts Native Helpline. This project described was supported by Grant Number 90EV0426 from the Administration on Children, Youth and Families, Family and Youth Services Bureau, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The opinions, findings, conclusions and recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Administration on Children, Youth and Families, Family and Youth Services Bureau, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
Unfortunately, available data on missing indigenous people is scattered throughout various tribal, federal, state, and other jurisdictions. One publicly-searchable database is the National Missing and Unidentified Persons System (NAMUS) operated by the U.S Department of Justice, though its information is dependent on data provided by various jurisdictions on a volunteer basis. NAMUS provides a search option for missing persons by race, including Native Americans.
An online database started in 2015 to log cases of missing and murdered indigenous women and two spirit people. Created by Annita Lucchesi, a doctoral student at the University of Lethbridge, the database is compiled by Native advocates and community members, family members, social media, federal and state missing persons databases, and law enforcement records gathered through public records requests. Data is currently available by request only: firstname.lastname@example.org.
See our comprehensive related coverage on MMIW – A Comprehensive Report on MMIW: The Curiously Different Tales of Violence against Indigenous Women On Both Sides of Turtle Island – by Lisa Ellwood.