The Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women Task Force held its second convening on Thursday, December 12th, 2019 at the First United Methodist Church in Gallup, NM. The first part of the meeting was a closed working session. The discussion among task force members focused on defining the goals and objectives of our work and the development of subcommittees. Task force members discussed the types of information they would like to gather and key stakeholders to consult with to meet the goals that were identified. A focal point in the conversation was creating a realistic workplan within a limited timeframe. Figuring out the best method for streamlining the data gathering process will be essential to producing a final report that will be useful to addressing the crisis.
The meeting also included a public forum. Community members, survivors, and family members of a victim or survivor joined the taskforce to share their input and experiences. The task force learned about youth-led initiatives around MMIW and the importance of partnering with existing efforts. The survivor and family testimony highlighted the gaps in services for trauma and healing. Families impacted by this crisis are in critical need of support; and Gallup, in particular is scarce in the services available to victims of crime and survivors of violence.
In January the task force will focus on finalizing a vision and outline for the final report, in addition to formalizing a data gathering and stakeholder involvement plan.
The Indian Affairs Department, which oversees the task force, is getting ready to launch a MMIW webpage on their newly updated website. The webpage will include presentations, handouts, and summary notes from past and future meetings. It will also be used to share updates with the public.
The task force is looking to work in partnership with victim services professionals, advocates, prevention specialists, and grassroot efforts to better understand the scope of the MMIW crisis, identify barriers to addressing the crisis, and develop recommendations. Partners will participate in future task force planning sessions to provide additional expertise, and assist with data gathering activities to help with meeting the goals identified in the legislation and drafting the final report. If you are interested and able to commit to working with the task force from March to May 2020, then send an email to (Iad.firstname.lastname@example.org). Include “Re: Core Stakeholder Involvement” in the subject line and provide the following: Name, role and agency, contact information, and let us know what you expect to contribute.