The Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes’ Tribal Council boosted its reward offer to $10,000 for information on a woman who has been missing for almost a year.
The council had previously offered $1,000 for information on Jermain Charlo’s whereabouts, but earlier this month agreed to add $9,000 to the reward money. It would be paid out only if the information given results in the filing of criminal charges.
Charlo was 23 when she went missing in Missoula on June 16, 2018. Her case has gained media attention as awareness for the epidemic of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls has grown.
“The hope is to that the Tribes’ investment will go a long ways in holding someone accountable for what has happened to Jermain,” said Tribal Chairman Ronald Trahan in a prepared statement.
The tribes also funded a missing-person billboard for Jermain, and decided to keep it up for another six months for a cost of $2,600.
On some reservations, Indigenous women are murdered at a rate 10 times the national average, and more than eight in 10 American Indian and Alaska Native women experience violence.
Last month, Montana Gov. Steve Bullock signed five bills into law to address the issues around missing and murdered Indigenous people, and the state Department of Justice appointed a Missing Indigenous Persons Task Force as well as held a public training on missing persons cases.