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Order of the Arrow is a ‘secret’ scout society ‘in the spirit of the Lenni Lenape’ - a Lenape leader disagrees

INDIAN COUNTRY MEDIA NETWORK - September 16, 2019 - 7:00am

A century of history: The Boy Scouts ‘origin story’ has claimed ‘Native teachings and spawned several factions claiming American Indian lore (Part 2)


Lawsuit filed against news organizations

INDIANZ.COM - September 16, 2019 - 6:38am
A non-Indian attorney who was ousted from his job is seeking $6 million for alleged defamation in the Native media.

Reconciliation the focus of panel discussion at Thunder Bay's Brodie library

CBC ABORIGINAL NEWS - September 16, 2019 - 6:30am
Max FineDay

The leader of one of Canada's largest Indigenous-led charities hopes his visit to Thunder Bay, Ont., will allow him to amplify the voices of those passionate about reconciliation.

Categories: CANADA

Class action alleging discrimination by RCMP in North growing, says lawyer

CBC ABORIGINAL NEWS - September 16, 2019 - 6:00am
Yellowknife RCMP detachment

There is steady interest in joining a $600 million class action lawsuit claiming RCMP discrimination against Indigenous people in the North, according to one of the lawyers who initiated the lawsuit.

Categories: CANADA

'The back of my brain is sliding into my spine:' Kugluktuk woman desperate for help

CBC ABORIGINAL NEWS - September 16, 2019 - 5:00am
Andrea Egotik

Andrea Egotik has a structural abnormality that causes headaches and tremors. Egotik says she has been unable to get a referral to see a neurosurgeon or neurologist in the South. 

Categories: CANADA

Indigenous educational institute marks growth in Munsee- Delaware

CBC ABORIGINAL NEWS - September 16, 2019 - 4:00am

The Anishinabek Educational Institute is celebrating its 25th anniversary with increase in enrolment and new programs at its Munsee-Delaware campus.

Categories: CANADA

Purdue Pharma Files Bankruptcy As Part Of Opioid Settlement

LAW360 (Native feed) - September 16, 2019 - 3:28am
OxyContin maker Purdue Pharma LP filed for Chapter 11 protection in New York late Sunday night, less than a week after reaching a deal to settle more than 2,000 suits by local governments, states and tribes over its alleged role in fueling the opioid crisis.

Federal judge in Great Falls hears Keystone XL arguments

INDIANZ.COM - September 16, 2019 - 2:18am
The Rosebud Sioux Tribe and the Fort Belknap Indian Community are fighting the Keystone XL Pipeline in court.

Josué Rivas: I will be an ancestor to honor

INDIANZ.COM - September 16, 2019 - 1:36am
I began a healing process recently to better understand my role as a father of my own son.

Cherokee Language Master Apprentice Program Accepting Applications

NATIVE KNOT - September 16, 2019 - 1:00am

TAHLEQUAH, Okla. — The Cherokee Language Master Apprentice Program is now accepting applications. The two-year language program is centered on a group language immersion experience and only accepts a limited number of applications each year.

“This language program is critical in how we will continue to preserve and promote our language for future generations,” said Principal Chief Chuck Hoskin Jr. “Every day that the men and women of that department work with their students is another day that they help preserve our language.”

After completing the program, students will have 4,000 contact hours with the Cherokee language and will have spent more than 40 hours each week studying and speaking the language.

“Each generation of Cherokee people have been tasked with challenges,” said Howard Paden, director of the Cherokee Language Master Apprentice Program. “This generation’s greatest challenge is whether or not our precious Cherokee language will continue to exist as a living language. The Cherokee language has helped us overcome some of the greatest adversities written in history. We know, without a doubt, the values that flow over us through the Cherokee language are sacred. It is time for us as Cherokee people to save this precious gift.”

In 2014, the tribe began the program as a part of the Cherokee Nation Community & Cultural Outreach department as a way to promote the Cherokee language. Since its inception, the program has grown into its own department.

As part of his first 100 days initiatives, Chief Hoskin proposed in August the largest investment in language programs in the tribe’s history, including a plan that will dedicate millions of dollars in business profits to create a new language program facility. It also will quadruple the size of the Cherokee Language Master Apprentice Program.

Applicants must be 18 years or older, be available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., live near Tahlequah or be willing to relocate, and possess a strong desire to learn and cultivate the Cherokee language and culture through teaching.

The deadline for applications is Oct. 1, 2019.

Applications are available at https://language.cherokee.org/language-programs/cherokee-language-master-apprentice-program/

Submit applications to Don-Dugger@cherokee.org, or mail to: Cherokee Language Master Apprentice Program, P.O. Box 948, Tahlequah, OK, 74465.

For more information, call the Cherokee Language Master Apprentice Program office at 918-207-4964.


Buffalotown Clothing Co. mixes pop and Cherokee culture

NATIVE KNOT - September 16, 2019 - 1:00am

LAWRENCE, Kansas – Buffalotown Clothing Company, created by Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians citizen Luke Swimmer, pays homage to Cherokee culture and heritage with modern pop culture designs on merchandise such as T-shirts, hoodies, shorts, and stickers.

The name Buffalotown is based on an old Cherokee township that once existed in North Carolina near the town of Cherokee, which was combined with another township called Ottertown to create the Snowbird Community, the home of Swimmer’s wife, Tabytha.

“The name Buffalotown is actually the name of a township that my wife’s from. At one point after removal, they combined those two townships into Snowbird. That’s where the name came from, and it’s just a way to kind of shout out or honor where we’re from. That community doesn’t get a lot of representation,” Swimmer said.

More commonly known as just Buffalotown, the family business started in 2017. Swimmer said he has always done graphic design in some capacity and decided to create T-shirts using his designs.

“I’ve always done graphic design and stuff like that. I always thought about doing shirts, like taking some of my drawings and doing shirts. I thought ‘well let’s just try it.’ We bought some shirts and sold every one of them. Everybody loved them. It’s been going like that ever since,” he said.

Swimmer’s designs stem from his interests in skateboarding and tattooing while growing up, and also “revamping” old or traditional Cherokee concepts.

“Kind of a modernization of our culture and traditions. Trying to take old things and trying to revamp them,” he said.

His new design called “Water Panther” intertwines modern and traditional designs from different cultures, he said.

“The panther design is just a really cool design that I thought would look good on a shirt. What I did was incorporate a ‘traditional’ style tattoo panther with a truly traditional style panther design. The panther holds significance in our culture with the blue clan being referred to as the panther clan at times,” Swimmer said.

The “Skoden” design is based on a phrase often heard in Indian Country used to say, “let’s go then.”

“I used the Skoal bandit for reference since I grew up watching NASCAR with my dad because he used to race. The sport is very popular in North Carolina. The design also mixes with Cherokee culture with stomp dances as depicted with the hat with the feather and tobacco being used for prayer, ceremonies, etc. To me it is answering to someone asking about going to stomp, ‘Skoden,’” he said.

The brand can be recognized by its logo, an interpretation of Sequoyah, the originator of the Cherokee syllabary.

“It’s just a cool image. That was the first step was creating a brand and creating a logo. I wanted the logo to be strong to where once you see it it’s like ‘oh, that’s Buffalotown.’ It’s just like the strength of a Nike check,” he said.

He said he used brand awareness by first creating the logo, a business tactic he learned in school while earning his Masters in Business Administration, to help market his business and get people interested. He also plans to pass down his entrepreneurism to his own children.

“It’s my wife and I’s company. We’re trying to make it where our kids can pick up and learn how to do it. Entrepreneurship is kind of woven into our culture. My grandma, Amanda Swimmer, I grew up watching her make stuff, go to town and sell it to make money. It’s kind of like my way of doing what she was doing. She taught my dad how to make pottery, and he does that to this day. I create art and we make shirts and hopefully they’ll learn how to do that,” Swimmer said.

For more information, visit thebuffalotown.com or Buffalotown Clothing Co. on Facebook.


Former Muscogee (Creek) Nation Chief Pleads Guilty to Bribery Charge

NATIVE KNOT - September 16, 2019 - 1:00am

TULSA, Okla. — George P. Tiger, the former principal chief of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation, pleaded guilty Friday to one count of bribery of accepting $61,900 while serving as chairman of the Alabama-Quassarte Tribal Town Economic Development Authority Board.

Tiger faces up to 37 months in federal prison.

In court on Friday, Tiger admitted accepting more than one bribe from Aaron Dewayne Terry. Terry, who held various management and control positions in companies owned by the Alabama-Quassarte Tribal Town, a 350 member tribe, located in Wetumka, Oklahoma.

“Mr. Tiger took advantage of the position of trust he had been given by the people of the Alabama-Quassarte Tribal Town,” U.S. Attorney Brian J. Kuester commented. “Instead of acting in the best interests of those he was appointed to serve Tiger sought out and received unlawful profit for himself.”

Tiger won election to the principal chief position of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation in 2011 but was defeated by James Floyd, who is not seeking another term this year. Tiger is currently running for the position. While Muscogee (Creek) Nation prohibits felons from serving in elected offices, Tiger name will still remain on the ballot for the nation’s primary election set for September 21.


Ranchers Appear to Win Battle over Drought Relief Funds

NATIVE KNOT - September 16, 2019 - 1:00am

WINDOW ROCK, Ariz. — With just days to spare until the deadline to roll over their drought compensation applications, Northern Agency ranchers appear to have won their battle with the tribe over federal drought relief funds.

In a meeting Monday in Shiprock with the Navajo Nation Council’s Resources and Development Committee, which also included representatives of the Navajo Department of Agriculture, the Bureau of Indian Affairs and the Navajo Land Department, the ranchers reiterated their request that the Nation withdraw its application for drought insurance under the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Risk Management Agency so the ranchers could individually claim the acreage under the Farm Service Agency’s Livestock Forage Disaster Program.

Ferdinand Notah, representing the agriculture department, continued to maintain that lumping the tribal trust land in New Mexico under one umbrella would result in a program that could help all ranchers and farmers — even ones who hadn’t applied for the FSA benefits — while the ranchers said they hadn’t seen any help from the department yet and preferred to apply on their own.

Under instruction from Natural Resources Division Director Rudy Shebala, the ag department had attempted to address the ranchers’ concerns in an Aug. 20 letter to the FSA asking that the agency compensate the ranchers directly as “sub-units” of the tribe, while also leaving the tribe free to apply for drought insurance. But Ernest Diswood, representing the ranchers, said that’s not what they wanted.

“When we had talked to Dr. Shebala earlier, that’s not what we agreed to,” he said. “We agreed that Dr. Shebala would write a letter asking to return benefits to the grazing permit holders, waive the (late) fee or the Navajo Nation would pay the fee, and we would receive rollover certification for September.”

Sept. 15 — this coming Sunday — is the deadline for the current year applications to “rollover” for next year. Meanwhile, the FSA has deferred compensation until the tribe and the individual ranchers can work out their dispute. The Aug. 20 letter, Diswood said, is problematic because it doesn’t resolve the issue of the tribe and the permittees “double-dipping” for the same acreage — which is the reason many of the permittees were denied benefits this year.

He also argued as he had in the past, that the Navajo Nation has no losses from the drought and nothing to insure because it doesn’t run cattle on the land as the producers do. Notah countered that under the drought insurance program, which is separate from the FSA program, acres of land are insured rather than cattle, and the grazing permittees don’t have any acreage.

According to Diswood, the FSA calculates “virtual acres” based on the number of cattle allowed under each grazing permit in order to award compensation.

Representatives from the Farm Services Agency had been invited to the Monday meeting to clear up some of the confusion but did not show up. RDC Chairman Rickie Nez said they had told him the agency had a mandatory meeting in Albuquerque the same day.

Former Agriculture Department manager John Blueyes argued the ranchers’ rights under Fundamental Law had been violated because they were not consulted when the tribe applied for drought insurance on their behalf. “Deadlines have come. Deadlines have gone. That bothers these people,” Blueyes said. “What more do we have to lose? We need to make amends.”

While Blueyes said the matter could be resolved administratively, RDC’s legislative counsel Shammie Begay said that’s not true, because the decision to purchase the drought insurance was enacted by legislation, which would have to be repealed.

Nez noted the ranchers could simply lobby President Jonathan Nez not to sign the drought insurance application when it comes due in November, but Diswood later said the ranchers have no problem with the tribe applying for the insurance as long as they leave the grazing permittees’ areas out of it.

Harold Dodge, grazing official for Nenahnezad Chapter, argued the tribe doesn’t even have a map of the area it’s claiming, or at least they aren’t showing it to the ranchers.

“I kept asking for maps — to this day I haven’t got one,” he said. “One-hundred, fifty-five thousand acres … we don’t even know where it’s at exactly.”

Notah said the acreage is claimed under “weather grids” used by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The precipitation is recorded for the various weather grids and the awards are made according to how much rainfall each area got.

Notah said the ag department has been in “constant contact” with the USDA, FSA, RMA and Natural Resource Conservation Service and has been waiting for a “comprehensive work session” to “get into the details” of the various programs.

But Elouise Brown, grazing committee representative for Tsé Alnaozt’I’I, said the ranchers need help now. “Ashoodi, ashoodi, ashoodi, let’s get this resolved today,” she pleaded.

Committee member Kee Allen Begay agreed, noting the Sept. 15 rollover deadline. “Let’s set another meeting as soon as possible,” he said, adding that the committee could go to the FSA’s office in Albuquerque if it had to.

The committee voted unanimously to meet with the president Tuesday and apprise him of the situation. According to Diswood, the president did not show up at that meeting, but Shebala did.

“The meeting was very positive,” he said, noting that Shebala agreed to allow the ranchers to draft a letter to the FSA making their requests and that Shebala would sign it. They would then meet with the FSA on Friday, hopefully resolving the matter before the Sunday deadline.

Diswood said the controversy has been beneficial in getting the ranchers together to present a united front, which they can continue to build on with other issues. “I think this may be the eve of a change in the way the tribe approaches issues related to land,” he said. Shebala did not return a phone call to confirm Diswood’s account of the meeting.


CRYP Graduates a Record-Breaking 11 Arts Interns from Summer Cohort

NATIVE KNOT - September 16, 2019 - 1:00am
EAGLE BUTTE, S.D. — On Labor Day weekend, the Cheyenne River Youth Project officially graduated 11 Lakota teens from its summer arts internship program. This is a record-breaking number for the nonprofit youth organization, which began offering teen internships in 2013. 
“Normally, we see five or six kids complete the full arts internship track,” said Jerica Widow, CRYP’s youth programs director. “This time, we doubled that number. It’s incredible.”
Not only did the teens complete their internships, but they also had an opportunity to exhibit their artwork at the annual Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe Powwow, Fair & Rodeo in Eagle Butte. Two of the young artists, Roberta High Elk, and Roslyn Smith, took third and fourth place.
“We’re so proud of them,” Widow said. “It’s always a good experience to prepare for and participate in a formal art show, but we were thrilled to see them also receive this special recognition. It’s a milestone for them, absolutely.”

Cheyenne River teens who are interested in pursuing arts education at CRYP’s Waniyetu Wowapi (Winter Count) Lakota Youth Arts & Culture Institute must first take an Art Basics course that serves as a prerequisite for the full arts internship. Once they complete the course, they’re eligible to apply to become an intern.

During the internship, teens learn graffiti art, digital arts, traditional arts, sculpture and pottery, stenciling, graphic arts, and screen printing. In addition, they have opportunities to learn more about the business side of art, with classes that include public speaking, entrepreneurship, financial literacy and merchandising; and they explore the impact of public art and discover how art can foster healing in communities.
“The teen arts internship incorporates a variety of opportunities for our young people to explore the creative process, create pieces that represent who they are and share their stories, and ultimately exhibit their work in a public showcase,” explained Julie Garreau, CRYP’s executive director. “We also give them opportunities to travel to important sites related to Lakota culture and to the arts.”
This summer, the art interns visited Wind Cave National Park. They also traveled to Hill City and Rapid City to tour the communities’ art museums. 
CRYP is currently accepting applications for the fall art internship, which will run from Sept. 16 to Oct. 18. It’s open to young people ages 13-18, who can expect to log 50 hours working in various mediums and participating in core job skills training.
To learn more about the Cheyenne River Youth Project and its programs, and for information about making donations and volunteering, call (605) 964-8200 or visit lakotayouth.org. And, to stay up to date on the latest CRYP news and events, follow the youth project on Facebook (/LakotaYouth), Twitter (@LakotaYouth) and Instagram (@lakotayouth and @waniyetuwowapi).

Conservationists Blast USFWS Denial of Yellowstone Bison Protection

NATIVE KNOT - September 16, 2019 - 1:00am

Agency ignores the court order, issues scientifically invalid 90-day ESA finding


WEST YELLOWSTONEMont. — Conservationists are blasting the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service notice in the Federal Register, published Sept. 6, 2019, that denies further consideration Endangered Species Act protections for bison herds in Yellowstone National Park. Today’s finding does nothing to remedy the fundamental flaw in the original finding that was struck down by the District Court for the District of Columbia in 2018. The new finding still applies the wrong standard of evidence for a 90-day finding, which a federal judge found illegal in 2017, and continues to disregard important scientific evidence that the bison herds in Yellowstone are two distinct genetic subpopulations which are threatened by current management actions that disproportionally target the Central Interior herd for capture and slaughter.

“Once again, the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service has applied the wrong evidentiary standard in our petition to list the Yellowstone bison as threatened or endangered,” said Darrell Geist. “The genetically distinct subpopulation of wild bison in the Central range is at risk of extinction. Nothing is being done to turn that fact around.”

The Yellowstone bison herds are the only continuously free-roaming wild bison in the United States.  They are the direct descendants of an estimated 60 million bison that once roamed North America, and are the only herds of substantial size free from cross-breeding with domestic cattle.  Unfortunately, due to the political pressure applied by the livestock industry, America’s national mammal is confined to less than 1 percent of its original range and in Yellowstone, it faces the constant threat of capture and slaughter by the Park Service as they attempt to migrate beyond the Park’s borders.

“The simple truth is that the livestock industry does not want bison to exist as a native wildlife species in the United States,” said Josh Osher, Montana and Public Policy Director for the Western Watersheds Project. “The Trump administrations latest finding is one more example of the way in which industry is favored over the natural world at all costs, even the potential extinction of an American icon, the wild bison.”

The new finding also wrongly limits the consideration of threats to the bison that occur as a result of the arbitrary confinement of the herds to the Park boundaries and some small areas immediately adjacent;  fails to acknowledge the significant threat posed by climate change to the bison’s current and potential habitat; and ignores the fact that the bison herds in Yellowstone are the only remaining wild bison herd of significant size that contains no cattle DNA.  As a wildlife species, bison have lost 99% of their range and been reduced to one percent of their former numbers in North America.

“The new finding continues to flaunt the Endangered Species Act’s legal requirement to use the best available science and not politics,” says Michael Harris, Legal Director of Friends of Animals.


Bipartisan House Members Co-lead Solutions to Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women Crisis

NATIVE NEWS ONLINE - September 16, 2019 - 12:02am

Published September 16, 2019 

WASHINGTON — Congresswoman Gwen Moore (WI-04) helped introduce the BADGES for Native Communities Act with Congresswoman Deb Haaland (N.M.-01) to fight violence against Native women and address the missing and murdered indigenous women crisis. The BADGES for Native Communities Act will address barriers that stand in the way of improving the efficiency of law enforcement agency data sharing and officer recruitment and retention – both of which are imperative to address the crisis of missing and murdered Indigenous women. The bill will also ensure Tribes can continue important public safety programs that work to increase protections for Native communities by making them permanent.

“The crisis of murdered and missing Native American women devastates communities who often lack the resources and tools to take the appropriate steps. Expanding access to criminal and missing persons data between tribal and federal law enforcement agencies will make Native American communities safer and help protect the most vulnerable in Indian Country,” said Rep. Gwen Moore. “I successfully fought to include protections for Native American women in the 2013 Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), and supporting this legislation is another reminder that our work is far from over.”

“Everyone deserves to be safe and free from the cycle of violence, but a legacy of violence against native women and children perpetuates the disproportional violence that they experience. VAWA has shown us how impactful congressional public safety measures can be. It’s why I’m leading the BADGES Act to support the resources and data systems that will help us prevent violence, solve missing persons cases, and help end the missing and murdered indigenous women crisis,” said Rep. Deb Haaland, Co-Chair of the Congressional Native American Caucus.

The Senate version of the BADGES for Native Communities Act is led by U.S. Senator Tom Udall and has been referred to the U.S. Senate Committee on Indian Affairs. The House bill has bipartisan support from co-leads Representatives Tom Cole (Okla.-04), Sharice Davids (Kans.-03), Markwayne Mullin (Okla.-02), Don Young (Alaska), Ruben Gallego (Ariz.-07), Tom O’Halleran (Ariz.-01), Norma Torres (Calif.-35), Dan Newhouse (Wash.-04), Gwen Moore (Wis.-04), and Paul Cook (Calif.-08).

“It is fitting that the introduction of the BADGES for Native Communities Act falls on the 25th anniversary year for VAWA, which has been instrumental in making native communities safer. Although we have made strides in the right direction, more can still be done. Far too often, tribal members suffer the consequences of the dysfunctional relationship between the Federal Bureau of Investigation and National Institute of Justice. Moreover, Tribes have only half of the amount of local law enforcement officials necessary to effectively police and protect their communities. By streamlining federal criminal database coordination and incentivizing efforts to recruit more law enforcement officials, the BADGES Act represents a necessary step toward making Native American communities safer,” said Rep. Tom Cole, Co-Chair of the Congressional Native American Caucus.  

“Improving coordination and information sharing between law enforcement agencies is vital to increasing the safety of Indian Country and addressing the epidemic of missing and murdered indigenous women. I’m proud to join my colleagues in introducing the BADGES Act, which will help ensure the health and safety of Native communities and allow survivors to seek the justice that they deserve,” said Rep. Sharice Davids.

“The silent crisis of missing and murdered indigenous women is wreaking havoc on our families and our communities,” said Rep. Markwayne Mullin. “All parties have to work together to fight back against this epidemic of violence. Our priority must be to protect native women and children and this legislation will help federal, state, tribal, and local law enforcement agencies better coordinate their efforts.”

“Alaska Native communities are home to some of the most remote population centers in our great state. Because of the difficulty in travel and communication, crime – particularly the scourge of missing and murdered indigenous women – has reached a crisis level,” said Rep. Don Young. “Alaskans from all walks of life have been horrified by recent headlines detailing stories of violence, sexual assault, and other crimes, and it is crucial that we take action to make our communities a safe place for everyone. The BADGES Act will increase public safety by bringing down the barriers preventing law enforcement from properly coordinating and providing Native communities with increased access to law enforcement data. I am proud to co-lead this legislation and am grateful for the work of Congresswoman Haaland on this important issue. It is my great hope that we can soon turn the tide in the fight against crime being perpetrated in our Native communities, and I will keep working to ensure that Alaska is a safe place for all.”

“For too long, Indigenous communities have been denied the attention and resources they need to ensure the safety of their people and get justice for missing and murdered Indians,”said Rep. Ruben Gallego, who chairs the Subcommittee for Indigenous Peoples of the United States. “I’m proud to support this bipartisan bill, which would improve data collection, facilitate federal coordination with tribes, and increase resources for tribal law enforcement – steps that will make a real difference in Indian Country and help begin to curb the crisis of missing and murdered Indigenous women.”

“Within Arizona’s First Congressional District are 12 different native tribes and nations, all of whom who face significant hurdles in their pursuits for justice both in and out of the courtroom,” said Rep. Tom O’Halleran. “As both a public servant and a former police officer, I have dedicated much of my life to protecting our most vulnerable and advocating for underrepresented communities like many in Indian Country. I know just how difficult our criminal justice system can be for these individuals. Today, I am proud to join my colleagues to introduce the BADGES Act to streamline public safety and criminal justice reform for Native American communities and strengthen tribal sovereignty in the process.”

“On the 25th Anniversary of the Violence Against Women Act, it has never been more important to reaffirm our commitment to addressing the crimes against missing and murdered indigenous women,” said Rep. Norma Torres.“ That’s why I’m proud to work with Congresswoman Haaland to introduce legislation that would facilitate data sharing between law enforcement to tackle this crisis head on and strengthen public safety in Indian Country.”

“For too long, Native American communities and law enforcement agencies have struggled to access coordinated federal crime data. The BADGES for Native Communities Act aims to address this issue by providing tribes and tribal law enforcement access to federal resources and criminal databases needed to effectively investigate cases of missing and murdered indigenous women. It strengthens our tribal communities’ ability to enforce public safety by addressing the lack of resources and the shortage of qualified law enforcement personnel facing Native communities in Central Washington and across the country. I will continue to work to bring justice for indigenous women and their families and look forward to this legislation being signed into law,” said Rep. Dan Newhouse.

“I’m proud to cosponsor this important legislation on the week of the 25th Anniversary of the Violence Against Women Act. The BADGES Act will bridge data gaps in the federal government to improve cooperation with Indian Country law enforcement, provide grants to fight the missing and murdered Indigenous women crisis, and initiate studies and demonstration programs that will ensure safety for Native American communities. I look forward to working with my colleagues to advance this critical legislation,” said Rep. Paul Cook.

The BADGES for Native Communities Act bridges agency data gaps and ensures safety for Native communities by:

  • Addressing inefficiencies in federal criminal databases;
  • Increasing Tribal access to federal criminal databases;
  • Improving public data on missing and murdered indigenous women cases and Indian Country law enforcement staffing levels;
  • Promoting more efficient recruitment and retention of BIA law enforcement;
  • Providing Tribes with resources to improve public safety coordination between their governments, states, and federal agencies; and
  • Mitigating against federal law enforcement personnel mishandling evidence crucial to securing convictions of violent offenders.
  • The BADGES for Native Communities Act has broad support from victim advocate organizations, tribal officials and public health organizations:

“It’s imperative that Congress and the U.S. Government honor the trust responsibility and do everything in their power to support tribal authority to end the crisis of violence against American Indian and Alaska Native women and bring all perpetrators to justice. BADGES is one small step forward, we look forward to continuing our work with Representative Haaland and the rest of Congress to continue the momentum of change needed to end violence against Native women.” — National Indigenous Women’s Resource Center 

“The BADGES Act seeks to ensure justice for our relatives who are navigating multiple justice systems, promotes adequate response and will improve systemic coordination at several levels to allow for more effective access to data. Eliminating barriers to safety and coordinating existing efforts makes sense. Our tribal communities need this now.” — Coalition to Stop Violence Against Native Women (CSVANW)

“I applaud Rep. Deb Haaland for introducing the House companion bill of the BADGES Act, and I commend the efforts by our federal partners in improving data collection and information sharing with the Navajo Nation and our sister nations. I would like to emphasize that data compiled by any agency are actual stories of indigenous families—we must hold them sacred. When the Navajo Nation initiated the Missing & Murdered Diné Relatives (MMDR) project, we made it a point to work with Navajo families and to tell their stories through the creation of a data institute, advocacy campaign, and community action. We are also pleased to know that this Act will provide grant opportunities to assist the Navajo Nation in bulking up its response to addressing MMDR and we look forward to continue working with our federal partners.” – Council Delegate Amber Kanazbah Crotty, 24th Navajo Nation Council

“Seattle Indian Health Board has shed light on the gaps in and the challenges of collecting data that informs policies and resources addressing the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls crisis. The BADGES Act takes an important step in bridging law enforcement data gaps to address the issues that have caused our missing and murdered loved ones to go unnoticed for centuries. We stand with our tribal partners to increase interagency coordination, and will continue to support all efforts to ensure the safety of our relatives regardless of where they reside.” — Seattle Indian Health Board

“The United States, in partnership with Tribal Nations, must do more to address the shameful rates of missing and murdered Native people. This includes ensuring parity for Tribal law enforcement–both in access to crime information, as well as opportunities for recruitment and retention of personnel. USET SPF supports the BADGES for Native Communities Act as a strong step toward more fully delivering upon the trust responsibility and obligations, as well as better supporting the exercise of our inherent sovereign rights and authorities to protect our people and communities.” – President Kirk Francis, USET Sovereignty Protection Fund

The post Bipartisan House Members Co-lead Solutions to Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women Crisis appeared first on Native News Online.


Chickasaw Nation Annual Meeting and Festival Set for Sept. 27 – Oct. 5

NATIVE NEWS ONLINE - September 16, 2019 - 12:00am

Chickasaw Nation Gov. Bill Anoatubby delivers State of Nation Address last year.

Published September 16, 2019

ADA, Okla. — A time of reunion, fellowship and cultural pride; the Chickasaw Nation Annual Meeting and Festival gets underway Sept. 27 and continues through Oct. 5.

This year marks the 59th Annual Meeting of the Chickasaw Nation and 31st Annual Chickasaw Festival. Each year, friends and family from across the country attend the weeklong event, which is highlighted by Governor Bill Anoatubby’s State of the Nation Address Saturday, Oct. 5.

In 1960, more than 100 Chickasaws met at Seeley Chapel near Connerville, Oklahoma, to discuss the state of their nation and a vision for the future. Annually, the Chickasaw Nation pays tribute to this historic event by celebrating Chickasaw pride and progress during the Chickasaw Nation Annual Meeting and Festival.

The week features the coronation of tribal princesses, stickball, fun runs, archery, horse shoes, senior and junior Olympics, golf tournament, coed slow-pitch softball and artists of southeastern tribes displaying their wares at the Southeastern Art Show and Market (SEASAM).

Venues in the Tishomingo, Ada, and Sulphur areas will host activities throughout the week, beginning with a social game of stickball, stomp dance and a traditional cornstalk shoot at Kullihoma, located 7 miles east of Ada on S.H. 1.

Several activities are planned in Tishomingo, including a one-mile fun walk and 5K run, co-ed softball tournament, a golf tournament, museum tours, Junior Olympics and a stickball tournament.

Three young ladies will be crowned Chickasaw Princess, Little Miss Chickasaw and Chickasaw Junior Princess during the Chickasaw Princess Pageant at the Ada High School Cougar Activity Center. New princesses will serve the remainder of 2019 and into autumn 2020 as ambassadors of the Chickasaw Nation at events around the state and across the nation.

The Chickasaw Nation Annual Meeting and Festival takes place Sept. 27-Oct. 5 in Tishomingo, Ada and Sulphur. Activities are planned for attendees of all ages.

Chickasaw Cultural Evening will include artists, Chickasaw Press authors, a traditional meal of pashofa, grape dumplings, pork and fry bread at the Chickasaw Cultural Center.

Chickasaw Nation Arts and Culture Awards, conducted on the cultural center campus will honor the Silver Feather Award recipient and name the Dynamic Chickasaw Woman of the Year.

The hub of activity is the Chickasaw National Capitol, located in Tishomingo, where attendees learn to play stickball, try their hand at archery, tour historic Chickasaw Nation buildings, stomp dance and learn techniques in ancient arts and crafts during the week.

The Southeastern Art Show and Market (SEASAM) takes place at the historic capitol grounds in Tishomingo. The show is open to all artists of Southeast and Woodlands tribes.

Other events include a parade, arts and crafts vendors, cultural demonstrators, food booths, a health fair, horseshoe tournament, children’s activities, entertainment, a parent/child fishing tournament, storytelling, and stomp dance and stickball demonstrations.

A complete listing of events, locations and schedules is available online at AnnualMeeting.Chickasaw.net. Event schedule is subject to change. Please visit often for the latest event updates.

Follow Chickasaw Nation social media accounts on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for updates.

For more information call (580) 371-2040 or 1 (800) 593-3356.



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The New Mexico Indian Affairs Department Awards over $540,000 to Special Projects and Tobacco Cessation and Prevention Programs in New Mexico Tribal Communities

NATIVE NEWS ONLINE - September 16, 2019 - 12:00am

Published September 16, 2019

SANTA FE, N.M. – The New Mexico Indian Affairs Department (IAD) on Friday announces $297,324.00 in Special Projects funding and $249,300.00 in Tobacco Cessation and Prevention Program (TCPP) funding that was awarded across several tribal communities or tribal serving organizations by the Special Project Grant Program.

During the 2019 New Mexico Legislative Session, IAD received a General Fund Appropriation to support special projects in Fiscal Year 2020 that benefit NM tribal communities. From this appropriation the department made funds available for projects that identify and address a need of tribal communities across New Mexico.

The Indian Affairs Department receives an appropriation from the Tobacco Settlement Revenue Oversight Committee for Tobacco Cessation and Prevention Programs. The committee continues to fund the department to direct tobacco cessation and prevention campaigns in tribal communities.

“IAD’s Administrative Services Division works closely with New Mexico tribal governments and tribal serving entities to ensure New Mexico’s tribal communities continue to receive the funding they need in order to provide services and programs to their community members,” said Secretary Lynn Trujillo. “We are proud to be able to fund such important projects through these funds.”

One of the projects funded is with the Keres Children’s Learning Center. “The goal of our program is to work with community elders and parents to support younger generations as they develop in the Keres language,” said Keres Children’s Learning Center Executive Director, Trisha Moquino. “The best way to do native language revitalization is through intergenerational language immersion.  This strengthens the language at all age levels and prepares our young people for lifelong bilingualism.

Below are the awarded Special Projects and a description:

New Mexico Kids Matter, Tribal Serving Organization, $33,379

Native American Children in Foster Care Project

Pueblo of Zuni, Tribal Government, $35,000

Zuni Veterans Project

Explora Science Center and Children’s Museum, Tribal Serving Organization, $49,404

Native MESA: To increase Native students’ motivation and persistence in STEM

Indian Pueblo Cultural Center, Tribal Serving Organization, $49,500

Professional Development for Tribal Librarians: Archival Training on Print & Digital

Keres Consulting, Inc., Tribal Serving Organization, $32,206

Youth Diabetes Prevention Program

Keres Children’s Learning Center, Tribal Serving Organization, $49,971

Building Community through an Intergenerational Model of Keres Language Fluency

Pueblo of Pojoaque, Tribal Government, $47,864

Pojoaque Youth Employment and Resilience Project

Below are the awarded Tobacco Cessation Prevention Programs and a description:

Pueblo of Acoma, Tribal Government, $15,094

Smoking Cessation & Prevention

Albuerque Area Indian Health Board, Inc., Tribal Serving Organization, $23,200

Commercial Tobacco Cessation & Prevention

Capacity Builders, Inc., Tribal Serving Organization, $27,795

Tobacco Free

Pueblo of Pojoaque, Tribal Government, $14,338

Be Tough – Don’t Puff Part II

Keres Consulting, Inc., Tribal Serving Organization, $28,979

Commercial Tobacco Outreach Program

Albuerque Indian Center, Inc., Tribal Serving Organization, $31,528

Tobacco Cessation

Mescalero Apache Tribe, Tribal Government, $40,471

Tobacco Cessation & Prevention

Native American Community Academy, Tribal Serving Organization, $25,249

Tobacco Cessation & Intervention Program Expansion

Oso Vista Ranch Project, Tribal Serving Organization, $42,646

NM Native American Community Outreach Education

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Cherokee Heritage Center Invites Students to Experience Cherokee Culture Firsthand

NATIVE NEWS ONLINE - September 16, 2019 - 12:00am

Published September 16, 2019

TAHLEQUAH, Okla. — Area students are invited to experience Cherokee culture firsthand through interactive opportunities offered at the Cherokee Heritage Center.

Ancient Cherokee Days is held Oct. 3-4, and Cherokee Heritage Days runs Nov. 7-8. Both events feature similar curriculum for school-age children.

“Education has always been a priority for the Cherokee people, and events like these allow us to expand the boundaries of the classroom,” said Dr. Charles Gourd, executive director of Cherokee Heritage Center. “It is vitally important that we support our educators and take an active role in teaching an authentic and accurate account of our history from our perspective. These students will enjoy an immersive experience that will not only teach, but celebrate, the history, culture and art of the Cherokee people. We hope that through events like this we continue to challenge the notion that our culture exists only in history books and get more people to understand and appreciate what makes Cherokee culture so special.”

Admission for each event is $7 per student and accompanying adults are only $2. Teachers and bus drivers are free. Admission includes entrance to the Cherokee National Museum, the Trail of Tears exhibit, Adams Corner Rural Village and Diligwa, an authentic re-creation of Cherokee life in the early 1700s.

The outdoor cultural classes feature interactive curriculum and games based on Cherokee lifestyle in the early 18th century, including craft demonstrations in pottery making, basket weaving, food grinding, weapons or tool making, and language.

Additional stations feature Cherokee games such as chunkey, marbles, stickball, blowguns, language activities and more. Face painting is offered at $1 per design and represents Cherokee tattoos from the early 1700s.

Groups are encouraged to make their visit a daylong event. Picnic tables are available for guests bringing lunches, and there is ample parking for school buses and private vehicles.

Registration begins at 9:30 a.m. and the event runs from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

For more information or to register for the events, please contact Tonia Weavel at 918-456-6007 or tonia-weavel@cherokee.org.

The Cherokee Heritage Center is the premier cultural center for Cherokee tribal history, culture and the arts. It is located at 21192 S. Keeler Drive, Park Hill, Oklahoma.

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What You Didn’t Know About Running a Successful Charity Raffle

NATIVE NEWS ONLINE - September 16, 2019 - 12:00am

Published September 16, 2019

You want to raise money for a good cause. Excited, you ask friends and family to support you. But all you get are empty promises or little to no support. Organizing a charity raffle goes a long way to raise funds for a cause or charity without looking like you’re begging or desperate.

And the best part is, you’re not alone. Thousands of charities around the world run raffles to raise more money for their own personal causes each year. So it’s a practical, well-proven, and time-tested method to help achieve income goals. However, you need to jump through some hoops before you get started.

It’s easy to run a charity raffle but …

You need a license to start with. Obtaining one is easy. In some instances, it’s not even required. For example, if you run a charity lottery as part of an event, no need for a license. But you need one if you’re running a standalone raffle.

Next, you need to know where to source your raffle prizes. Running a raffle is about a charity making 100% profits and keeping them all. But even so, supporters need to win prizes to keep motivated in supporting your charity or cause for weeks on end.

If you can have prizes donated to your cause by corporates, supporters and partners, the better as you’ll save sums of money. (Note: the prizes you choose depend on the people buying raffle tickets).

Get prizes that flatter supporters, the kind that attracts them to the raffle. You can have cash prizes as well as mind-blowing but ingenious prizes to encourage your supporter base to try the raffle.

A charity lottery is only profitable with a proper plan in place

Mapping out your goals will help save time and money. You can hire professional charity raffle providers to handle everything for you including fueling engagement. All these require planning ahead of time. For the record, well-planned charity lotteries increase success of other future campaigns.

A clear plan also helps identify who your target support base is, and what you want to achieve for your charity after the raffle is done with. After crafting a great plan for your charity raffle, promote it. Go out of your way and hire a marketing team if possible. It will help get word out fast.

You can run marketing campaigns both online or offline. This marketing strategy is worth its weight in gold as it can help inject emotion and persuade supporters to turn out in large numbers. If you focus on this pointer you’ll be home and dry. Even woo more supporters to the lottery.

A quick reminder: Your local authority needs to know how much profit you earn from the raffle. And whether 20% of the income was directed to funding the intended cause. This legal requirement is important after 3 months for all standalone raffles you run.

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