Missing and Murdered American Indians and Alaska Natives Awareness Day
On May 5, 2020, we commemorate Missing and Murdered American Indians and Alaska Natives Awareness Day. This annual commemoration is a time to renew our commitment to ensuring resources are available to solve missing persons cases and providing services to victims and their families.
Learn more about some of the work being undertaken by the Federal government, in conjunction with its tribal partners, to address missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls.
- Last year, Attorney General William P. Barr launched a National Strategy to Address Missing and Murdered Indigenous Persons to develop protocols for a more coordinated law enforcement response to missing persons cases.
- President Trump recently signed Executive Order 13898, forming the Task Force on Missing and Murdered American Indians and Alaska Natives. The Task Force, designated Operation Lady Justice, seeks 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.
Visit the Tribal Multimedia Resources section of the OVC site for materials designed to inform and assist victim service providers and allied professionals in their efforts to help crime victims in Indian Country.
President Trump proclaimed May 15, 2020, as Peace Officers Memorial Day and May 10 through May 16, 2020, as Police Week. In his proclamation, President Trump asks us to "pause to remember all those who have lost their lives and who have suffered permanent disabilities defending their communities and the rule of law, including the heroes we have lost this year to the coronavirus."
Attorney General William P. Barr asks all Americans this week “to join me in saying ‘thank you’ to our nation’s federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement officers.
“We honor our critical allies on the front lines in the pursuit of justice for all victims of crime and remember those brave men and women who have laid down their lives in defense of others,” pronounced OVC Director Jessica Hart. “We recognize that our nation’s officers are crucial to the fulfillment of OVC’s mission and we thank them for their unwavering service.”
During National Police Week, OVC presents the following resources and programs to assist law enforcement and the communities they serve—
OVC Partnerships With Law Enforcement
This 6-minute video discusses some OVC-sponsored programs and resources to enhance the delivery of services to victims of crime by law enforcement agencies.
Law Enforcement-Based Victim Services Program
This program will develop or enhance and sustain victim assistance service programs within law enforcement-based systems and better coordinate partnerships with community-based programs to serve the broader needs and rights of all crime. The International Association of Chiefs of Police serves as the training and technical assistance provider for the sites funded by this program.
The Vicarious Trauma Toolkit (VTT)
Organizations can mitigate the potentially negative effects of trauma exposure by becoming vicarious trauma-informed. VTT offers guidance to help law enforcement agencies strengthen their ability to address work-related exposure to trauma.
The National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, Fraternal Order of Police/Fraternal Order of Police Auxiliary, and Concerns of Police Survivors annually lead the Nation in commemorating National Police Week. On Wednesday, May 13, 2020, participate in a Virtual Candlelight Vigil to honor fallen law enforcement officers.
The Nation commemorates Older Americans Month every May.
In his Presidential Proclamation, President Trump states that "Our Nation’s older Americans are among the most susceptible to fraud and other financial schemes. To help counter these vile crimes, I have instructed the Department of Justice (DOJ) to prioritize protecting older Americans from financial exploitation."
In March, DOJ launched the National Elder Fraud Hotline, operated by OVC, that provides services to adults ages 60 and older who may be victims of financial fraud. If you or someone you know is a victim of elder fraud, contact the National Elder Fraud Hotline at 1–833–FRAUD–11 (1–833–372–8311).
Visit the DOJ Elder Justice Initiative website for additional resources to support victims of elder abuse.
In 1983, President Ronald Reagan proclaimed May 25 as National Missing Children's Day. The U.S. Department of Justice commemorates this event annually, encouraging parents, guardians, and other caregivers to make child safety a priority.
"The Department of Justice is proud to honor the law enforcement officers and private citizens who showed courage, presence of mind, and an unwavering commitment to protecting children from dangerous predators," said Attorney General William P. Barr. "We thank these heroes, whose actions made it possible to bring to justice those who attempted to exploit our most innocent and vulnerable citizens."
Visit the Missing and Exploited Children section of the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention for a wealth of resources on this topic including—