Not Invisible Act Commission

A lack of urgency, transparency, and coordination has hampered our country’s efforts to combat violence against American Indian and Alaska Native people. In partnership with the Justice Department and with extensive engagement with Tribes and other stakeholders, the Interior Department is marshalling our resources to finally address the crisis of violence against Indigenous peoples.” 
Secretary Deb Haaland

At the Department of the Interior, we believe that everyone deserves to feel safe in their communities, but American Indian and Alaska Native people are at a disproportionate risk of experiencing violence, murder, or going missing. For too long, the national crisis of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Peoples has been overlooked and underfunded.

On Oct. 10, 2020, the Not Invisible Act of 2019 was signed into law as the first bill in history to be introduced and passed by four U.S. congressional members enrolled in their respective federally recognized Tribes, led by Secretary Deb Haaland during her time in Congress.

The Departments of the Interior and Justice are working to implement the Not Invisible Act, including by establishing the Not Invisible Act Commission, a cross jurisdictional advisory committee composed of law enforcement, Tribal leaders, federal partners, service providers, family members of missing and murdered individuals, and most importantly — survivors.

The Commission developed recommendations through the work of six subcommittees focused on improving intergovernmental coordination and establishing best practices for state, Tribal and federal law enforcement to bolster resources for survivors and victim’s families, and combatting the epidemic of missing persons, murder and trafficking of American Indian and Alaska Native peoples, as specified under the law. 

In March 2024, the Departments released their response to the Commission’s recommendations on how to combat the missing or murdered Indigenous peoples and human trafficking crisis. The federal response recognizes that more must be done across the federal government to resolve this longstanding crisis and support healing from the generational traumas that Indigenous peoples have endured in the United States. 

The Commission was tasked with: 

  • Identifying, reporting and responding to instances of missing and murdered Indigenous peoples (MMIP) cases and human trafficking,
  • Developing legislative and administrative changes necessary to use federal programs, properties, and resources to combat the crisis, 
  • Tracking and reporting data on MMIP and human trafficking cases, 
  • Considering issues related to the hiring and retention of law enforcement offices, 
  • Coordinating Tribal-state-federal resources to combat MMIP and human trafficking offices on Indian lands, and   
  • Increasing information sharing with Tribal governments on violent crimes investigations and other prosecutions on Indian lands.   

As part of the Commission’s final report to Secretary Haaland, Attorney General Merrick Garland and Congress, the subcommittees held public hearings to hear directly from the public.

Members of the Commission:

  • Natasha Anderson, Chief Judge, Nez Perce Tribe
  • Deidra Williams Angulo, Sonder Mind Mental Health Services
  • Bazil-Lu Windy Boy, Officer, Yakama Nation Police Department
  • Eric Broderick, retired mental health professional
  • Ruth Ann Buffalo, former Legislator, 27th House District of North Dakota
  • Grace Bulltail, survivor or family member of missing or murdered person
  • Francisco Burrola, Special Agent in Charge for Immigration and Customs Enforcement at Homeland Security Investigations, U.S. Department of Homeland Security
  • Kerri Colfer, National Indigenous Women’s Resource Center
  • Christine Crossland, Senior Social Science Analyst, National Institute of Justice — U.S. Department of Justice
  • Amber Kanazbah Crotty, Council Delegate, The Navajo Nation Council
  • Janet Davis, former Tribal Leader, Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe
  • Jordan Dresser, former Chairman, Northern Arapaho Tribal Business Council
  • Michelle Demmert, former Tribal Judge, Tlingit & Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska
  • Paul Etnire, Captain, Arizona Department of Public Safety
  • Dale Fine, Jr. Special Agent, Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation
  • Leanne Guy, survivor or family member of missing or murdered person
  • Jolene Hardesty, Michigan State Police, Missing Children’s Clearing House Analyst
  • Carmen Harvie, survivor or family member of missing or murdered person
  • Karen 'Kari' Hearod, Director, Office of Tribal Affairs and Policy; Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Admin—U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
  • Don Hedrick, Chief of Police, Rapid City Police Department
  • Tamra Truett Jerue, Alaska Native Women’s Resource Center
  • Vivian Korthuis, CEO of the Association of Village Council Presidents, Native Village of Emmonak
  • Hope MacDonald LoneTree, Deputy Commissioner, Administration for Native Americans—U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
  • Juana Majel-Dixon, Madam Secretary, National Congress of American Indians
  • Annita Lucchesi, survivor or family member of missing or murdered person
  • Gregg Peterman, First Assistant United States Attorney for District of South Dakota; US Attorney's Office—U.S. Department of Justice
  • Kimberly Poyer, Section Chief, Victim Services Division, Federal Bureau of Investigation — U.S. Department of Justice
  • Allison Randall, Acting Director, Office on Violence Against Women—U.S. Department of Justice
  • Shawnna Roach, Investigator, Cherokee Nation Marshal Service
  • Katherine Darke Schmitt, Deputy Director, Office on Victims of Crime—U.S. Department of Justice
  • Karen Stauss, Senior Policy Counsel, Human Trafficking Prosecution Unit, Civil Rights Division, U.S. Department of Justice
  • Sonya Tetnowski, National Council of Urban Indian Health
  • Karonienhawi Thomas, Detective Sergeant, Saint Regis Mohawk Tribal Police Department
  • Kristin Welch, Waking Women Healing Institute
  • Patricia Whitefoot, survivor or family member of missing or murdered person
  • Cord Wood, Captain, Oregon State Police


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