JACKSON, Wyo. — Nov. 19 is Red Shawl Day, which aims at bringing attention to the acts of violence committed against Indigenous peoples, particularly women and children.
According to the Department of Justice, American Indian and Alaska Native women are missing and murdered at a rate of more than 10 times the national average.
Throughout the week, people are encouraged to wear red as a symbol of the loss of sacred lifeblood through violence.
According to a statewide report on Missing and Murdered Indigenous People, between 2011 and September 2020, 710 Indigenous persons were reported missing. Eighty-five percent were juvenile, and 57% were female. They were reported missing from 22 counties in Wyoming. The report also found that 105 Indigenous people, 34 females, 71 males, were victims of homicide between 2000 and 2020. Indigenous homicide victims were 21% of the total homicide victims in Wyoming between 2000 and 2020 yet Indigenous people account for less than 3% of the population in Wyoming.
Grand Teton National Park is recognizing Red Shawl Day today by draping a red shawl on the Grand Teton National Park sign.
“Lost, missing, and be on the lookout have been words we have used this past summer many times asking for your help in finding people and sadly sometimes to provide closure to families. Missing persons don’t always have the voice of a national park when they are lost,” said the park. “Today we wear the Red Shawl for missing and murdered Indigenous women and children.”