Americans may be largely unaware of the extreme and pervasive dangers facing American Indian and Alaska Native women. According to a National Institute of Justice study, more than half have been sexually assaulted. More than a third have been raped — a proportion more than double that of white women. For girls and young women aged 15 to 24, homicide is the third leading cause of death. And thousands of American Indian and Alaska Native women and girls have simply gone missing.
It is a crisis that has been too long ignored. The federal government funds police services, criminal investigation, detention facilities, tribal courts and more. But the assistance has been stretched too thin to bring crimes against women under control.