Used with permission. The Albuquerque-based Coalition to Stop Violence Against Native Women has hosted its fifth annual Tribal Leaders Summit to brief tribal, state and federal officials who work with victims of sexual assault and domestic violence.
Our conversation has been edited for length and clarity. While much of the data we have about sex trafficking is anecdotal, a high of women forced into sex trafficking identify as Native American or Canadian First Nations. If the senators and other absent political leaders had attended the summit, what would you have hoped came to their attention?
Kim Benally : I believe that [Senators] Heinrich and Udall are strong advocates for our people compared to leaders in other states. I think it would have been important for them to hear specifically from Delegate Crotty on initiatives the Navajo Nation has taken on, because while we do have mainstream sex trafficking, like what you see on Craigslist and Back, it does look different in our tribal communities.
Cheyenne Antonio : I do see the need in holding traffickers able. NMPR: What do you hear from sex trafficking survivors and sex workers about what their needs are? That says a lot about not only our tribal communities but our culture at large. NMPR: How do we acknowledge problems like sex trafficking in Native communities without further adding to the shame and stigma that they stem from?
Cheyenne Antonio : Definitely inviting the communities to have these conversations is very important. What does that look like?
Now we have more impacts coming in, impacts like social media. Social media is a good thing, but it has its negativities as well. If you look into our committees, our tribal councils, there are hardly any young people there.
You can order anything online, including sex. Kim Benally : One of our building principles within the coalition is that solutions come from within the communities.
That would be a good starting place. We do have our inherent problems in all our respective tribal communities, but we also have the solutions. her at margaret.
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