In the United States, indigenous women are ten times more likely to be murdered than the national average. An astounding 84% of indigenous women will be physically abused or sexually harassed sometime during their lifetime. Perpetrators are likely to go unpunished because they are not on law enforcement’s radar screen.
While the crisis that indigenous women in America face has gone on far too long, things are beginning to change. Our Brunswick County libraries are at the forefront of a national, state and local effort to promote awareness of these missing and murdered women.
[Pictured above: Mary Beth Livers, Executive Director, Brunswick Arts Council (left) and Jane Warren, former FOLSOI president, hang the donated red dresses in Harper Library.]
Governor Roy Cooper has proclaimed Wednesday, May 5, as the “Day of Awareness for Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women.” In observance of this day, each of the libraries has an exhibit of red dresses, provided by the Brunswick Arts Council, which signifies the loss of so many lives.
The Red Dress Exhibits at Harper and Barbee Libraries will be up for the month of May. We hope you will stop by to look at them and scan the barcode which will take you to a website with more information. Or for a national perspective, check out: https://www.niwrc.org/mmiwgnatlweek21
The numbers are staggering. Indigenous women are murdered at a rate 10 times higher than other ethnicities and it’s the third leading cause of death for indigenous women according to the CDC. Harper and Barbee Libraries are honored to host this important exhibit to bring attention to this important issue.
So heartbreaking. I appreciate our libraries taking a stand to bring attention to this issue.