Solving Cases of Missing and Murdered American Indians, Indian Tribes and Alaska Natives

I’ve been keeping an eye on this endeavor to protect and improve the trust assets of American Indians, Indian tribes and Alaska Natives. It’s one we don’t hear about when the news channels are on, but it’s also one that has come a long way from the initial forming the Task Force and now the establishment of offices dedicated to solving cold cases involving missing and murdered American Indians and Alaska Natives through Operation Lady Justice. — Good stuff!

The Native Tribes are some who teach us a lot about conservation and also that we need to fight to overcome struggles. They’re also some who we could learn from when it comes to freedom.

Bureau Highlight: Bureau of Indian Affairs 

People standing in a line cutting a ribbon
Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs Tara Katuk Sweeney, Senior Advisor to the President Ivanka Trump, Secretary of the Department of the Interior David Bernhardt, and others, cutting the ribbon to open the first office dedicated to solving cold cases involving missing and murdered American Indians and Alaska Natives. Photo by Bureau of Indian Affairs.
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The Bureau of Indian Affairs’ mission is to enhance the quality of life, to promote economic opportunity, and to carry out the responsibility to protect and improve the trust assets of American Indians, Indian tribes and Alaska Natives. 

On November 26, 2019, President Trump signed Executive Order 13898, forming the Task Force on Missing and Murdered American Indians and Alaska Natives. The Task Force, designated Operation Lady Justice, aims to enhance the operation of the criminal justice system and address the legitimate concerns of American Indian and Alaska Native communities regarding missing and murdered people – particularly missing and murdered women and girls.  The task force has been empowered to review Indian Country cold cases, to strengthen law enforcement protocols, and work with tribes to improve investigations, information sharing and a more seamless response to missing persons investigations.

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On July 27, 2020 in Bloomington, MN, U.S. Secretary of the Interior David L. Bernhardt, Senior Advisor to the President Ivanka Trump, and Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs Tara Katuk Sweeney established the first of seven offices dedicated to solving cold cases involving missing and murdered American Indians and Alaska Natives through Operation Lady Justice. This opening was followed by offices opening in Rapid City, SDBillings, MTAlbuquerque, NM, the Gila River Indian Community in Arizona, and Anchorage, AK. The last office will be opened in Nashville, TN. 

The Cold Case Task Forces will be staffed with law enforcement personnel and newly appointed special agents from the Bureau of Indian Affairs Office of Justice Services (BIA-OJS), along with personnel from other Operation Lady Justice Task Force partners including tribal law enforcement, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Offices of the U.S. Attorneys.

Under President Trump’s leadership and through Operation Lady Justice, the Bureau of Indian Affairs is making real progress towards making tribal communities safer for everyone.

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Mia Anstine
MAC Outdoors LLC
PO Box 5504
Pagosa Springs, CO 81147-5504 

Mia Anstine is an outdoor writer, licensed outfitter, hunting guide, keynote speaker, and a range safety officer, firearms instructor, and archery instructor. She is the founder of MAC Outdoors and Host of the MAC Outdoors Podcast. 

Mia Anstine strives to encourage others to outdoors, hunt, fish, shoot, and survive life with others in a positive way.

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