New Mexico has the largest number of indigenous women who have disappeared or been killed in the country – 78 – that’s according to an Urban Indian Health Institute report.
A tribal technical school in Albuquerque is hosting a roundtable discussion Thursday on missing and murdered indigenous women.
The featured speaker at the event is Annita Lucchesi of the Sovereign Bodies Institute in California. She created a database of missing and murdered indigenous women in the U.S. and Canada.
“You can’t respond to violence you don’t track," said Lucchesi. The lack of data collected by cities around the country has made it difficult to address crimes in indigenous communities, she said. "Also, we are not going to be able to work toward a future free from violence and missing and murdered loved ones if we are aren’t able to track the violence and understand its magnitude and dynamics."
Lucchesi said it’s meaningful to families and communities to know they are not alone in carrying their grief. The database includes information on victims, perpetrators, and police response. It’s only available upon request.