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HEIDI HEITKAMP | Savanna's Act Awareness

Season 2, Ep. 6

VERMILLION, S.D.- Empathy without action is meaningless. 

Those are words spoken by former North Dakota U.S. Senator Heidi Heitkamp at the University of South Dakota School of Law regarding Savanna's Act.

On this week's episode of Credit Hour, Host Michael Ewald has a conversation with Senator Heitkamp about this piece of legislation involving murdered and missing indigenous women.

They discuss Savanna's Act and why law enforcement offices must be held accountable for cold cases and the lack of attention for murdered and missing indigenous women

“Over many years, what became increasingly apparent is that where the rest of the world would pay a lot of attention to a missing white person, it did not get the same reaction for Native American people,” Sen. Heitkamp said. “There was and continues to be a backlog of cold cases involving missing and murdered indigenous people in which their families were never given the opportunity to tell their story.”


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VOICES AMPLIFIED | The Nexus of Law & Criminal Justice Reform

Season 4, Ep. 3
The University of South Dakota’s podcast Credit Hour welcomed USD School of Law dean Neil Fulton to discuss the legal dimensions of systemic racism, social justice and criminal justice reform as part of its series “Voices Amplified.” “To address these problems, we have to understand, identify and engage with our differences, and then seek out points of commonality. That requires having difficult conversations in a patient way,” said Fulton. “None of us are really built to do that without working at it. Higher education can help us be prepared to do that.” Fulton discussed the legal aspects of criminal justice reform efforts like removing qualified immunity and defunding the police as well as the ways higher education can address issues like systemic racism. “I think particularly here in South Dakota it’s so important because coming to a college campus may be the first time where a lot of students have a sustained encounter with someone who isn’t like them, that doesn’t look like them, who isn’t of the same race or who doesn’t have the same socioeconomic background,” said Fulton. “This can be one of the first places where we have the sustained opportunity to have those conversations and build up both the skills and inclinations to attack these problems.” Credit Hour is the University of South Dakota’s podcast highlighting the achievement, research and scholarship of its staff, students, alumni and faculty. Follow Credit Hour on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, and www.usd.edu/podcast.