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MN Office of MMIR: A Holistic Approach to Treating an Epidemic

Director of MN Office of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Relatives
Director of MN Office of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Relatives

Juliet Rudie, Director of MN’s Office of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Relatives, discusses her new role and her hopes for making the world safer for indigenous people.

Native women make up 1% of the population in Minnesota, and we account for 9% of the homicide rate…Native women are seven times more likely to be murdered than white women. And research found that the root causes include colonialization, racism, and the sexual objectification of Indigenous women, girls, and two-spirited people…There are native young men that go missing as well…And to me, it's startling…Why haven't we been looking at it? …But now we are…And now we need to do something about it...

 – Juliet Rudie, Director of MN Office of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Relatives

Juliet Rudie is of a member of the Lower Sioux Indian Community, she retired from a career in law enforcement that uniquely situated her for the role of Director of Minnesota’s Office Missing and Murdered Indigenous Relatives. In this segment of Area Voices she discusses the contributing aspects of missing and murdered indigenous people, ways her office aims to remedy the epidemic and support survivors and family members, and how her life and career have uniquely inspired her position.

I'm honored to lead this office…It's very personal to me. I've had a cousin that's been missing since 2017 from my home reservation. I have two cousins that have been murdered with no justice... I need to be a voice…I like to call it a community restorative justice approach because we have to look at it holistically. It's not just one factor. And we need to do this, to help fix this problem, as a community.

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Katie Carter started at Northern Community Radio in 2008 as Managing Editor of the station's grant-funded, online news experiment Northern Community Internet. She returned for a second stint in 2016-23. She produced Area Voices showcasing the arts, culture, and history stories of northern Minnesota.