All across this United States, referred by Native Americans as Turtle Island, an epidemic of Native American Women are disappearing at an alarming rate. According to Hawaiian Therapist Lea Denny there are over 5,100 Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women (MMIW) in this country. One major problem is that currently Native American Tribes have no jurisdiction to prosecute non Native Americans who rape and murder Native American Women on reservations. This is preventing Tribal Police and Tribal Courts from being able to protect their Tribal members. The subject is so dire that Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin invited Founder of the Healing Intergenerational Roots HIR Health Center Lea Denny to be a Speaker about the severity of this crisis, but also to talk about Trauma Informed Healing which is a culturally appropriate way to foster healing of Native American communities. Organized by the Marquette University Native American Student Association President Alex Liberato and the Intercultural Engagement Center hosted the No More Stolen Sisters Luncheon on March 1, 2019 in the Alumni Memorial Union from 12 pm – 2 pm.
HOPE: TRAUMA INFORMED HEALING
What can be done to face this growing problem? This is where Lea Denny’s work steps in. Through her HIR Health Center where they offer Native Americans individual, groups, and family therapy that is both culturally appropriate and Trauma Informed Care. The Trauma Informed Care Movement is being led by Saint A an over 164 year old progressive social services agency in Milwaukee which Lea Denny is also part of the Trauma Informed Care Movement. With Trauma Informed Care Leaders like Lea Denny and partnering with Saint A both are working on addressing the MMIW crisis by moving to make the entire Milwaukee community into a National Leader in the Trauma Informed Care. Through Dr Bruce Perry a National Trauma Doctor that works on a National Level with Trauma and partner with Saint A, Dr Perry points to Lea Denny as a Milwaukee Leader in working on a community level using Trauma Informed Healing on both the individual and local level.
TAKING HEALING ACTION
One major way Lea recommends to help address MMIW is by participating in community events that bring awareness. One such event that is coming up is the
National Awareness Day of the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls on May 5, 2019.
Milwaukee and all across the country Native American Women are encouraged to wear a red dress to show their solidarity with addressing MMIW. There will be MMIW speakers and events such as walks to bring the often overlooked MMIW issue to the forefront and in the media’s attention. Take part of the healing process and participate in a MMIW event in your area.