#TeamYKD has always, and will always, support the cause to protect indigenous people from exploitation, misrepresentation, under representation, and extinction. The current state of affairs has placed us at the center of an epidemic that has resulted in countless individuals being kidnapped and/or murdered. Too many of our relatives have been lost and we’re making a stand – along with many other community partners, advocates, and leaders – to say NO MORE! THIS HAS TO STOP! WE NEED TO WORK TOGETHER TO PUT AN END TO THIS PROBLEM!
In May 2019, we joined Council Delegate Amber Kanasbah-Crotty, former Navajo Nation Vice President Rex Lee Jim, and Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez to discuss what actions can be taken to shift the trajectory, slow down the rate at which people are going missing or losing their lives, target interventions, and take precautionary measures to prevent more people from becoming victims to violent crime. It was during that meeting that we decided, as a group, to host public forums all across the Navajo Nation – to bring awareness to the issue, but also to empower the people who have been directly effected. The Missing and Murdered Diné Relatives initiatives was formalized around that same time with community partners, and we organized and united around this issue to seek out sustainable, effective, long-term solutions that will put an end to problem that is tearing apart our homes and homeland.
Diné College was chosen to host the first #MMDR Forum, a 2-day community forum open to the public at the Shiprock South Campus in the John Pinto Library. Registration is FREE & can be submitted via Eventbrite at: http://bit.ly/2KqYvK4
The forum will introduce the community organizers & contributors that are working together to develop a data institute to address our Missing and Murdered Diné Relatives (MMDR). The intent of the forum is to actively engage attendees in the process of creating a framework for the institute, as well as, provide a space for the families of missing and murdered relatives who are still searching for their loved ones, or are grieving the loss of their loved ones. The goal is JUSTICE and HEALING. And, #TeamYKD is proud to be a part of this collaboration as organizers and members of the MMDR Executive Team.
Also, in an interesting pivot related to #MMDR, Adrian and Kelsey Marie Lee of Navajo Tea Time recently weighed in on #MMIW #MMIWG #MMDR issues our people are facing on their YouTube channel. True to the name of the channel, they voice some unpopular opinions, and share some of their own stories. So, if you have 30 minutes to spare, give it a view.