Indigenous missing person cases get researchers' attention
May 22, 2023
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — A New Mexico task force charged with addressing missing person cases involving Native Americans is teaming up with researchers in Nebraska on a data collection project that they hope will begin to close the gaps when it comes to tracking cases and their outcomes nationwide.
The goal of the federally funded effort is to better define the scope of what many experts and activists have referred to as a “silent crisis.” The work began last week, said Melody Delmar, special projects coordinator with the New Mexico Indian Affairs Department.
One of the challenges for policymakers across Indian Country has been the lack of a consistent and sustainable system for reporting and tracking such cases. Researchers at the University of Nebraska-Omaha will be using a model first developed for that state to address data collection across multiple law enforcement jurisdictions.