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Dec 7, 2018

Senate Passes Tester's Bill to Address Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women Epidemic

Savanna's Act Now Needs to Pass the House Before Heading to President's Desk

(U.S. Senate) – U.S. Senator Jon Tester’s bill to help address the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women epidemic unanimously passed the Senate Thursday night, just a few weeks after the Senate Indian Affairs Committee unanimously voted to send Savanna’s Act to the Senate floor. 

“All of us must work together to end this epidemic,” Tester said. Savanna’s Act would ensure we all have access to the most comprehensive data regarding these crimes and make sure law enforcement agencies are on the same page as they investigate this unacceptable epidemic.”

According to the National Institute of Justice, more than 80 percent of native women have experienced violence—almost half within the last year. As a senior member and former Chairman of the Senate Indian Affairs Committee, Tester has worked hard to raise awareness about this epidemic, support survivors, and bring their assailants to justice.

Savanna’s Act would require the U.S. Department of Justice to better collect and report crime data and increase access to federal crime databases that track missing persons across Indian Country. It would also create standard guidelines for responding to cases of missing and murdered indigenous women, laying out a clear framework for cooperation between tribal, federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies.

Earlier this year, Tester secured a historic $133 million to help tribes assist survivors of violent crimes through the Crime Victims Fund and is sponsoring legislation to make this funding permanent. The SURVIVE Act was passed unanimously out of Committee and is currently awaiting a vote on the Senate floor.

Tester has called for a Senate hearing on the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women epidemic, which will take place on December 12, 2018.

Office Contact Information

Senator Tester's Montana staff serves the state from offices in Billings, Bozeman, Butte, Great Falls, Helena, Kalispell, and Missoula. Please bring your concerns with federal agencies, academy nominations, and other situations to one of these Montana offices.

Billings

Judge Jameson Federal Building
2900 4th Ave N, Suite 201
Billings, MT 59101
Phone: (406) 252-0550
Fax: (406) 252-7768

Bozeman

Avant Courier Building
1 E Main Street, Suite 202
Bozeman, MT 59715
Phone: (406) 586-4450
Fax: (406) 586-7647

Butte

Silver Bow Center
125 W Granite, Suite 200
Butte, MT 59701
Phone: (406) 723-3277
Fax: (406) 782-4717

Great Falls

119 1st Avenue N, Suite 102
Great Falls, MT 59401
Phone: (406) 452-9585
Fax: (406) 452-9586

Helena

Capital One Center
208 N Montana Avenue, Suite 202
Helena, MT 59601
Phone: (406) 449-5401
Fax: (406) 449-5462

Kalispell

8 Third Street E
Kalispell, MT 59901
Phone: (406) 257-3360
Fax: (406) 257-3974

Missoula

130 W Front St.
Missoula, MT 59802
Phone: (406) 728-3003
Fax: (406) 728-2193

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