Missing Indigenous Persons Task Force meets for first time

Posted at 9:32 AM, Jun 12, 2019
and last updated 2019-06-12 11:32:46-04

HELENA – The Task Force created to help address the missing Indigenous people’s crisis met for the first time Tuesday in Helena.

The Missing Indigenous Persons Task Force was created by the passage of Senate Bill 312, also known as the Looping in Native Communities (LINC) Act.

The Task Force will administer grant money from the LINC Act with the goal of improving interagency collaboration across jurisdictions in missing person cases, particularly in Native American communities.

There are 11 people appointed to the task force, including representatives from Montana’s tribal nations and reservations, the Attorney General’s Office, the Montana Highway Patrol, and the Montana Department of Justice.

Montana Attorney General Tim Fox told MTN News about the group’s significance and importance.

“I think one of the most important things we have to understand is that this just isn’t someone else’s problem, this isn’t someone else’s kid that went missing,” Fox said. “This is a problem that could affect all of us.”

Fox said officials want to make sure the correct resources are in place so agencies react in the most appropriate and efficient way.

The Montana DOJ and the U.S. Attorney’s office is holding a free training Wednesday, June 12 in Helena for Law Enforcement and the public.

Topics will include how to report a missing person, connecting the dots between missing persons and human trafficking, and understanding missing person alerts and advisories.

The training begins at 8 a.m. at the Delta Hotel in Helena. You can view an agenda here.

-Reported by Christine Sullivan/MTN News