Statement of Solidarity Loss Within Anti-Violence Advocacy Community Member Perla Rodriguez, Director of Outreach, Wichita Area Sexual Assault Center (WASAC) Murdered by Partner

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - November 17, 2017

We, The National Indigenous Women’s Resource Center (NIWRC), join thousands of other advocates in mourning, prayer, and continued advocacy to honor those lost to the crisis of domestic and sexual violence.  We stand with our relatives in Kansas at the loss of Wichita Sexual Assault Center staff member Perla Rodriguez. As advocates and activists fighting to end intimate partner violence, we send healing thoughts to the family, friends, survivors that have been impacted by Perla’s work, and to the Kansas advocate community at large.

The national anti-violence movement community heard the announcement from the Kansas Coalition Against Sexual and Domestic Violence (KCSDV). In sharing the heartbreaking news of Perla’s death, KCSDV reported that she was found murdered in her home early Tuesday morning, the suspect being her boyfriend. NIWRC stands in solidarity with our movement relatives, and we are painfully reminded that domestic and sexual violence does not discriminate. NIWRC is humbled by grief, pain, sorrow, anger, and frustration, but we lift ‘prayers in action’ for healing over the loss of one of our own advocate relatives and to end this epidemic everywhere.

“Over half of the killings of women in America are related to intimate partner violence, with the vast majority of the victims dying at the hands of a current or former romantic partner, according to report released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released July 20, 2017.”

The Mission of NIWRC is to support culturally grounded, grassroots advocacy and to provide national leadership to ending gender-based violence in indigenous communities through the development of educational materials and programs, direct technical assistance, and the development of local and national policy that builds the capacity of Indigenous communities and strengthens the exercise of tribal sovereignty. NIWRC also stands with ALL communities to end violence and promote healing in the aftermath of violence. May we collectively continue the work in memory of Perla and all the lives lost due to domestic and sexual violence.  In their memory, we will never give up.

Lucy Simpson