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CHICAGO — Under blue skies, some 175 American Indians and allies gathered near Chicago, at the River Trail Nature Center in Northbrook, Illinois, to attend the "#MMIW: Gone Missing: #No More Stolen Sisters" event on Saturday, May 1. 

The purpose of the event was to honor the missing and murdered Indigenous women. Attendees heard speakers discuss the problem that is often overlooked in the United States. Organizers of the event felt it important to bring attention to the issue that is of epidemic proportions in Indian Country and discuss the lack of justice for the thousands of stolen Native sisters and their families.

Native women face murder rates more than 10 times the national average murder rate, more than 5,000 American Indian and Alaska Native women are missing and 55 percent of Native women have experienced domestic violence, according to the most recent data from the U.S. Department of Justice.

The American Indian Health Service of Chicago, American Indian Center of Chicago, Native American Chamber of Commerce of Illinois, Kateri Center and Forest Preserves of Cook County sponsored the event. 

Shannon Martin (Gun Lake Tribe) served as the emcee of the event. Photographs by Punkin Shananaquet.

Sisters Punkin Shananaquet and Shannon Martin, Lynx Clan, Gun Lake Tribe

 


H. Alex Bautista, Deputy Director, James R. Thompson Center and Andrew Johnson, Executive Director, Native American Chamber of Commerce of Illinois
One of several red dresses that symbolize a missing Indigenous woman.
Norma Robertson, Sisseton/Wahpeton Oyate
Renee Van Doren and Dominic Armstrong, American Indian Health Services of Chicago, Event Staff
Shannon Martin emceed the event.

Edior's Note: Shannon Martin contributed to this article from Chicago.

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