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Welcome to the Not In Our State Summit 2015 at the University of Montana in beautiful Missoula, Montana. 
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Tuesday, November 10 • 2:50pm - 4:00pm
Sing Our Rivers Red Montana Project

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Session Description: The Sing Our Rivers Red (SORR) organization aims to bring awareness to the epidemic of missing and murdered Indigenous women and colonial gender based violence in the United States and Canada. The events strive to raise consciousness, unite ideas and demand action for Indigenous women, girls, Two Spirit and LGBTQQIA people who have been murdered or gone missing, tortured, raped, trafficked, and assaulted, who have not had the proper attention or justice. SORR also is being planned in solidarity and with collaborative spirit, meant to support the efforts built in Canada, as well as highlight the need for awareness and action to address colonial gender violence in the United States. Sing Our Rivers Red organization recognizes that each of us has a voice to not only speak out about the injustices against our sisters, but also use the strength of those voices to sing for our healing. Water is the source of life and so are women. We ne ed to Sing Our Rivers Red to remember the missing and murdered and those who are metaphorically drowning in injustices. We are connecting our support through the land and waters across the border. More than 1,181 Native women and girls have been reported missing or have been murdered in Canada since 1980. There is not a comprehensive estimate of Indigenous women who are missing and murdered in the United States, but, many factors contribute to this epidemic such fear, stigma, legal barriers, racism, sexism, and the devastating levels of violence in the US. According to the US Department of Justice, nearly half of all Native American women have been raped, beaten, or stalked by an intimate partner. Native American women are 2.5 times more likely to experience sexual assault crimes compared to all other races. One in three Native American women will be raped in her lifetime; and on some reservations, women are murdered at a rate 10 times higher than the national average. For over 20 years there have been marches, events and awareness raising efforts each year throughout Canada on Valentine's Day, such as the Women's Memorial March, the Stolen Sisters movement, Sisters in Spirit, Families of Sisters in Spirit, the Walking With Our Sisters exhibit, creating a community-led database and map, such as the Highway of Tears, and using media via the #MMIW and #ItEndsHere hashtags. This spring the Sing Our Rivers Red exhibit was hosted across the state of Montana to raise awareness for our Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women. In each community stories were shared of loved ones that had been murdered or were missing. The goal of the Sing Our Rivers Red Montana Project is to remember our women that have been lost and bring forward their stories. The session will be a sewing circle to create an exhibit for the state of Montana with the vision of the exhibit to travelling to all the Montana reservations and the Little Shell community.

Learning Outcomes: Through participating in the sewing circle participants will learn more about issues related to murdered and missing indigenous women in the United States and Canada.


Ruth A. Swaney, Program Coordinator - Native American Natural Resource Program Heather Cahoon, Annie Belcourt, Maegan Ri

Ruth A. Swaney, Program Coordinator - Native American Natural Resource Program; Heather Cahoon, Annie Belcourt, Maegan Rides At The Door, Shane Sangrey, Anna Whiting-Sorrell, Gyda Swaney, Michael Munson, and Kathy Little Leaf.

Tuesday November 10, 2015 2:50pm - 4:00pm
UC 327