Amnesty: US Fails to Protect Indigenous Women from Sexual Assault
A new Amnesty International report finds that one in three Native American women will be raped in her lifetime, twice the national average for non-Native women. The report, "Maze of Injustice: The Failure to Protect Indigenous Women in the USA," is based on research carried out by Amnesty International USA during 2005 and 2006 in Oklahoma, South Dakota, and Alaska.
Authors of the report concluded that the high rate of rape results primarily from a lack of government funding, limited staffing, and confusion regarding tribal and county jurisdiction in cases of sexual assault. Even when reported, many of these rape cases fail to be prosecuted because, even though over 86 percent of rapes against Native women are committed by non-Native men, tribal councils have no jurisdiction over non-Native offenders, the US Department of Justice reports.
In an interview with Amnesty International, Juana Majel from the National Congress of American Indians, expressed the range of suffering Native women endure, saying, "Violence against Indian women occurs as a gauntlet in the lives of Indian women: at one end verbal abuse and at the other murder. Most Indian women do not report such crimes because of the belief that nothing will be done."
4/15/2014 Virginia Bishops Advocate More Abortion Restrictions for Poor Women - Using the Medicaid expansion debate as a platform, the Virginia Catholic Conference issued a statement Friday calling for the repeal of a Virginia law that allows state funding of abortion care for Medicaid recipients in situations where the fetus exhibits a "gross and totally incapacitating physical deformity" or a "gross and totally incapacitating mental deficiency."
Bishop Francis DiLorenzo of the Diocese of Richmond and Bishop Paul Loverde of the Diocese of Arlington authored the statement which urges Virginia lawmakers to act to expand Medicaid to cover more of Virginia's poor. . . .