5th Annual Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women’s March Draws Hundreds

On Friday, hundreds marched through downtown Duluth remembering the lives lost and supporting communities of women who continue to fall victim.

DULUTH, Minn. – In 2016 nearly 6,000 Indigenous women were missing or murdered nationwide.

On Friday, hundreds marched through downtown Duluth remembering the lives lost and supporting communities of women who continue to fall victim.

Those marching wore red which is a traditional healing color that has also come to signify missing and murdered indigenous women.

The day started with speeches and traditional dance and prayer before walking through downtown Duluth.

The police department helped block traffic on streets downtown as marchers of all ages walked to remember missing and murdered Indigenous women and support their family members.

The marchers want to bring awareness to how prevalent the issue is in the Northland.

“This is an epidemic among our people it’s an invisible epidemic across Indian country across the United States and into Canada,” said Lauren Matrious, who is marching in memory of her daughter Pennie.

84 percent of Native American women have experienced violence in their lifetime according to the National Institute of Justice.

Many in the Indigenous community are critical of how law enforcement has handled the issue.

They say those dealing with loss are often helped by members of their own community.

“I live at AICHO and I’ve had lots of support from them lots of support from friends like my best friend here they’ve done so much for me and they’ve tried to help me with trying to get justice for her but we keep hitting dead ends,” said Ann Perrin, who marched in honor of her daughter Raven.

Many at the March were walking in honor of a loved one and were able to carry photos and messages about their lost family members.

“There was part of me I felt like I was grieving all over again but at the same time it felt really good that I can get her picture out here get her name out here and just hope for justice,” said Perrin.

The day aimed to raise awareness and also served as a chance to speak about the women lost.

“She was very loving she loved to dance jingle she loved to play softball she wanted to go to college and she was very beautiful and had the world at her fingertips,” said Matrious about her daughter Pennie.

In 2019, legislation was passed in Minnesota to put together a task force looking into the issue of missing and murdered indigenous wome which is affecting so many in the communities.

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