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[l] at 7/15/19 10:01pm

Delegate Nelson S. BeGaye announces his retirement July 15, 2019 in the Council Chamber.

Published July 16, 2019

WINDOW ROCK, Ariz. – Delegate Nelson S. BeGaye (Lukachukai, Rock Point, Round Rock, Tsaile/Wheatfields, Tsé Ch’izhí), who has served on the Navajo Nation Council for four terms, has resigned from the Council for health reasons.

He announced his retirement on July 15, 2019 on the first day of the Summer Council Session in Window Rock, Ariz.

Born in the Tsaile-area on December 1, 1952, he spent much of his career before his election working for the Navajo Tribal Utility Authority. Asked to serve his people, Delegate BeGaye began his service in 2003 on the 20th Navajo Nation Council.

In an emotional, though strong farewell speech, Delegate BeGaye presented himself as the same hooghan-born man he was when he walked into the chamber 16 years ago, wearing a jacket, shirt, tie, Wranglers, and brand-new boots.

He credits much of his success to his wife, Linda, and the strong support of his constituents.

“I have worked hard to bring the best to the members of my chapters,” Delegate BeGaye stated.

In recounting the highlights of his career, Delegate BeGaye recalled driving down US 491 and seeing pipe being laid into the ground as a part of the San Juan River Water Rights Settlement. Seeing the physical implementation of the water rights approval legislation he sponsored struck a chord.

“I had to pull off the highway and just look at it,” stated Delegate BeGaye.

Additionally, as Vice Chair of the Naabik’íyáti’ Committee Síhasin Fund Subcommittee, Delegate BeGaye helped oversee the development of the $180 million Bulk Water and Waste Water Expenditure Plan (CJA-12-16).

Several delegates expressed their appreciation for Delegate BeGaye for championing the 2005 Diné Natural Resources Protection Act, which placed a moratorium on uranium mining on the Navajo Nation.

He also spoke of the rocky days after the market crash in 2008. As a member of the Navajo Nation Investment Committee, he and the Investment Committee brought back the Nation’s total trusts from approximately $600 million to well over $2 billion today.

One colleague earned special recognition from Delegate BeGaye, Delegate Amber Kanazbah Crotty (Beclabito, Cove, Gadi’i’áhi/To’Koi, Red Valley, Tooh Haltsooi, Toadlena/Two Grey Hills, Tséałnáoz’t’I’í). Before her election to the Council, she served as Delegate BeGaye’s legislative district assistant.

“And here she is reelected. I’m so proud,” Delegate BeGaye stated.

“The depth of knowledge that Delegate BeGaye brought to this Council is immense,” said Delegate Crotty. “Ahéhee’, delegate, for giving us your leadership and vision.”

Speaker Seth Damon (Bááháálí, Chichiltah, Manuelito, Tsé Lichíí’, Rock Springs, Tsayatoh) introduced Delegate BeGaye before he spoke before the Council.

“Even though he is still a young man, this gentleman is an elder statesman of the Navajo Nation,” stated Speaker Damon. “One of my first memories on the Council was Delegate BeGaye’s mentorship and soft, sturdy, and compassionate leadership. I can’t wait to see what Delegate BeGaye accomplishes in his next act in life. He will be missed, though we know he’ll always be near.”

Referencing past strong leadership that contributed to the resilience and strength of the Navajo Nation, Delegate BeGaye stated, “Let’s journey together.”

Across his career, Delegate BeGaye has served on the Health, Education, and Human Services Committee, Budget and Finance Committee, and the Síhasin Fund Subcommittee.

Upon the declaration of vacancy from the Navajo Nation Election Administration, a special election will be held for Delegate BeGaye’s seat. An individual may be appointed by Speaker Damon in the interim before the special election.

The post Let’s Journey Together: Navajo Nation Council Delegate Nelson S. BeGaye Resigns appeared first on Native News Online.

[Category: Currents]

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Published July 16, 2019

WASHINGTON — On Wednesday, July 17, 2019 at 2:30 PM EDT, the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs will hold a business meeting to consider:

        S. 886, Indian Water Rights Settlement Extension Act; and

·        S. 2071A bill to repeal certain obsolete laws relating to Indians.

 

DETAILS:

WHAT:         A committee business meeting to consider S. 886 and S. 2071

WHEN:         2:30 PM EDT, Wednesday, July 17, 2019

WHERE:      628 Dirksen Senate Office Building

Live video for the business meeting will be provided here.

The post Committee on Indian Affairs to Hold Business Meeting to Consider 2 American Indian Bills appeared first on Native News Online.

[Category: Currents]

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Published July 16, 2019

The exact origins of blackjack are unknown, but the first reference of the game was found in a book by Miguel de Cervantes. Today, centuries later, blackjack is one of the most popular casino games. To help popularize the game, early gambling houses offered bonus payouts if the players’ hand consisted of the ace of spades and a black Jack, which, in result, became the game’s name.

However, did you know that blackjack isn’t the original game but rather a popular American variation of the game known as Twenty-One? As a matter of fact, there are numerous other variations of blackjack out there and if you would like to learn about them, keep reading — we’ve made a small list comprised of the most popular and most fun variations of blackjack.

Classic Blackjack

Classic blackjack is undoubtedly one of the most popular variations of the game. As the name suggests, it’s also a variation that deviates from the standard the least. To win, you have to be closer to 21 than the dealer. Aces count either 1 or 11, face cards are worth 10, and 2-9 cards are worth their pip value.

If you’re playing in a brick-and-mortar casino, you are most likely to play classic blackjack with a single deck of cards. However, if you are looking for a place where you can play bitcoin blackjack or any other form of online blackjack, you might end up playing a game with multiple decks. That being said, make sure to check the software’s details.

There are also additional rules; for example, the dealers will hit on a soft 16 and stand on a soft 17. The payout for a natural blackjack is 3:2, and it beats any other hand with a value of 21. You can split any two cards that have the same face value into two separate hands. Doing that doubles your initial wager and, if you split aces, you will be able to receive only a single additional card, while you can hit multiple times if you split other hands.

Blackjack Switch Blackjack Switch doesn’t introduce a ton of new changes, but the ones that it does make the game a lot more fun and entertaining. The game is usually played with four, six, or eight standard 52-card decks. Instead of playing with one hand, players are dealt four cards in total at the beginning of each round.

Players can then choose to switch their top cards and exchange them between hands. For example, instead of having a 10-4 and 10-3 hand, you can have a 10-10 and 4-3. After everyone makes a decision whether they want to switch or not, the dealer presents the players with a chance to hit, stand, or double down for either of their hands.

However, to balance things out, casinos employ additional rules you should be aware of. For example, the dealer’s hand is a bust at 23 and a push if their hand’s value is 22.

Blackjack Surrender

Blackjack Surrender is one of the more popular variants of blackjack among the veterans of this game. It introduces the Surrender feature that can help players save a lot of money whenever they feel like they have an unfavorable hand.

It includes most of the rules you can encounter in other variants of blackjack, such as the dealer standing on 17, splitting any pair, or doubling down. A 7-card Charlie will also beat any other hand except for the natural blackjack.

Naturally, the game revolves around the Surrender feature. While some other variants may also offer the Surrender option, they usually allow you to surrender only if the dealer has peeked for a natural blackjack. In Blackjack Surrender, you can use the feature any time before you stand, hit, split, or double.

Notable Mentions

While we’ve included only a few popular variants of blackjack, there are many others you can play. The list of popular variants of blackjack includes games like Super Fun 21, Three Card Blackjack, European Blackjack, American Blackjack, Pontoon, Spanish 21, and many more.

Naturally, the game that the players enjoy the most boils down to players’ personal preference, and possibly whether you’re playing online or in a brick-and-mortar casino since there are a lot more options if you’re playing online.

Regardless of your preference, and whether you’re looking for a variant of blackjack that’s more exciting or has the lowest house edge, make sure to find the one that suits your playstyle the most

The post Popular Variations of Blackjack appeared first on Native News Online.

[Category: Currents]

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Published July 16, 2019

Abigail Echo-Hawk

SEATTLE — Urban Indian Health Institute, a division of Seattle Indian Health Board, is hosting an event where the Seattle Native community will gather to enter the names of missing indigenous loved ones into the Department of Justice’s National Missing and Unidentified Persons System (NamUs). In 2016, there were only 116 cases of missing indigenous women and girls in the NamUs database, but there were more than 5,700 cases reported. This community gathering is one of many in a nationwide effort to ensure more accurate data is available regarding missing indigenous people.

WHAT:

Community gathering to stress the importance of tracking missing persons

WHO:

Abigail Echo-Hawk, Director of Urban Indian Health Institute and Chief Research Officer of Seattle Indian Health Board

WHEN:

Thursday, July 18, 2019
5:30-7:00 p.m.

WHERE:

Seattle Indian Health Board
611 12 th  Avenue South
Seattle, Washington 98144

 

The post Local Native Community Gathering to Enter Names of Missing Indigenous People into Department of Justice National Database appeared first on Native News Online.

[Category: Currents]

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Hayes Lewis shakes the hand of Tina Bowannie of Zuni, NM after Bowannie earned a certificate for completing a two-day workshop on 3D printing. As part of the workshop, Bowannie was able to model a balloon-powered car and a two story house.

Published July 16, 2019

ZUNI, N.M. — Navajo Technical University’s Zuni instructional site located at the A:shiwi College and Career Readiness Center (ACCRC) has taken a community-based approach in reestablishing itself within the region since ending its collaboration with the University of New Mexico in 2018. As part of this approach, the Zuni site has engaged a wide array of regional partners and has focused on hosting community-centered events that promote a cross section of cultures that increase knowledge and understanding.

A Zuni Language and Culture Symposium was hosted at the ACCRC in June that welcomed Trisha Moquino of the Keres Children’s Learning Center and the 2017-2018 Miss Zuni Kenzi Bowekaty. The event featured a dance group performance and attendees were provided a traditional Zuni meal. Most recently, the instructional site played host to a two-day 3D printing camp conducted by the Ke’yah Advanced Rural Manufacturing Alliance, as well as a one-day workshop on medicinal plants and their use in lotions, salves, and tinctures by Pamela Pickens of Inscription Rock Trading in El Morro, NM.

The medicinal plants workshop was part of a series of agriculture workshops scheduled by the ACCRC through a BIA-Zuni agency grant that will also establish a community demonstration garden at the instructional site.  Other workshops conducted under the grant have focused on fruit tree grafting, pruning and orchard management, as well as soil regeneration using natural strategies. The remaining workshops will include an introduction to beekeeping on July 19, composting using the Johnson-Su Bioreactor method on July 26, and seed saving and traditional Zuni gardening on August 2.

Pamela Pickens of El Morro, NM gives a lecture on medicinal plants and their use in lotions, salves, and tinctures. “I encouraged everyone to walk around their house. Walk around the mountains. Our pharmacy is right outside the door,” explained Pickens, owner of Inscription Rock Trading.

“We took the lead from the council and other community members to re-establish traditional indigenous planting and farming,” explained Hayes Lewis, Director of A:shiwi College. “[The demonstration garden] is going to be the center where we reintroduce ways of planting and propagation of plants, and on the culture side, to reestablish the important connections between the humans, plants, Mother Earth, and the environment in ways that aren’t presently taught in most schools.”

NTU’s Zuni instructional site enrolled25 students during the spring semester, a number NTU is hoping to quadruple by fall semester.As Lewis works with NTU in increasing its student enrollment, the community is embracing the tribe’s advocacy and the opportunities for higher education.

“We want people to know that education doesn’t just end at grade 12,” explained Lewis, who worked at the Institute of American Indian Art for ten years as the Director for the Center for Lifelong Education and as an adjunct faculty member before serving as the Superintendent of Schools at Zuni from 2012-2016. “Connecting with NTU really shows and demonstrates that indigenous people can decide what education can mean from our own tribal perspectives and take a path that will be more holistic and more supportive of our communities.”

In addition to the remaining agriculture workshops, the ACCRC will be hosting the 2019 Zuni: Empowering Teachers and Community (ZETAC) Summer Institute from July 22-24, 2019. The institute is open to the community and will include presentations on holistic models of health, creating an artisan cooperative, and decolonizing the way we plant among other topics. NTU’s Zuni instructional site will also host a registration rally on July 31stfor anyone wanting more information about applying at NTU. Advisors, admissions staff, and financial aid counselors will all be in attendance.

For more information about NTU’s instructional site in Zuni or the remaining summer events, contact Reynelle Lowsayatee at reynelle.lowsayatee@ashiwi.orgor Vanessa Sandoval at vanessa.sandoval@ashiwi.org.

The post A:shiwi College and Career Readiness Center Takes a Community-Based Approach in Establishing Itself as an Instructional Site with Navajo Technical University  appeared first on Native News Online.

[Category: Education]

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Mark Charles thinks it is time for America to have a national conversation about race, gender and class.

Published July 15, 2019

Presidential Candidate Mark Charles (Navajo) wants to debate Trump 

WASHINGTON — Apparently, playing to his base, a not-so-presidential, on Sunday morning just before a round of golf, President Donald Trump told four freshmen minority Congresswomen through a tweet to “go back: to the country from where they are from. All four, Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan, are in fact citizens of the United States and would not be eligible to be members of Congress without such status.

Three of the four Congresswomen were born in the United States. Only Ilhan Omar, whose family fled civil war and came to this country from a Kenyan refugee camp, was born outside of the United States. She became a U.S. citizen when she was 17.

Mark Charles, a dual citizen of the Navajo Nation and the United States, announced in late May he is running for president of the United States. By Sunday afternoon, Charles responded to Trump’s remarks that race experts would call racist in a Tweet:

On Sunday morning President Donald J. Trump tweeted the thread pictured above. I don’t regularly respond to his chaos, but this tweet was so offensive and ignorant that I felt obliged to reply.

Mr President,

After the colonization and ethnic cleansing of Turtle Island, by European nations and the US, fixing the “totally broken”, white supremacist, racist and sexist foundations of THIS country is precisely what I am trying to do. I look forward to meeting you in the debates in 2020.

The post Trump Tells 4 Congresswomen to “Go Back” to Country Where They Came From: Presidential Candidate Mark Charles (Navajo) Responds appeared first on Native News Online.

[Category: Currents]

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Pictured above is SRMT Environment Division Director Tony David (far left) with fellows that included Maria Fernanda, Brandon Loomis, Jen Pinkowski, Sean Gallagher, Jennifer Adler, Laura Adler, Vanessa Barchfield, Soyini Grey, Laura Paddison, and CUNY Resilience Journalism Program Manager Dale Willman.

Published July 15, 2019

AKWESASNE —  The Saint Regis Mohawk Tribe’s Environment Division had the pleasure of sharing tribal efforts in nurturing a resilient environment with fellowship journalists from The City University of New York’s Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism on Tuesday, July 9, 2019.

Environment staff presented on the Akwesasne Cultural Restoration Program, the removal of the former-Hogansburg Dam, amongst other environmental initiatives, with international journalists who contribute to The New York Times, The Guardian, National Geographic, National Public Radio, The Associated Press and other international publications.

The post Sharing Environmental Resiliency Knowledge appeared first on Native News Online.

[Category: Currents]

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[l] at 7/14/19 10:00pm

Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez, General Wesley K. Clark, and Council Delegate Edmund
Yazzie at St. Bonaventure Indian Mission and School in Thoreau, N.M. on July 9, 2019.

Published July 15, 2019

THOREAU, N.M.  Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez and Council Delegate Edmund Yazzie welcomed U.S. Army General  Wesley  K.  Clark  to the Navajo Nation on Tuesday, at St. Bonaventure Indian Mission and School in Thoreau, N.M. The purpose of General’s  Clark  visit was to discuss potential renewable energy development within the eastern region of the Navajo Nation.

Clark  is a retired four-star general of the United States Army and serves as an entrepreneur, educator, writer, and commentator. He remains active in the areas of energy, alternative energy, corporate and national security, logistics, aerospace and defense, and investment banking. He also serves on various corporate boards throughout the country and has been awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, Defense Distinguished Service Medal, Silver star, bronze star, purple heart, honorary knighthoods from the British and Dutch governments, and numerous other awards from other international governments.

“It’s an honor to welcome General  Clark  to the Navajo Nation to discuss potential investment in renewable energy and technology. The time is now for our Nation to transition and prioritize clean, renewable energy. Our people, especially the younger people, want change and that’s what the Nez-Lizer administration is committed to. Therefore, we are initiating discussions to move forward with a diversified economy,” said President Nez.

General  Clark  added, “The country, including the Navajo Nation needs to move towards a better and long-term investment in renewable energy. The Nation has the capabilities to meet the country’s energy challenges and combat the threat of global warming.”

In April, President Nez and Vice President Myron Lizer issued a historic proclamation, known as Navajo Hayoołkaał or Navajo Sunrise, stating that the Nation will pursue and prioritize clean, renewable energy development for the long-term benefit of the Navajo people.

The proclamation states that the Administration will prioritize providing off-grid solar-generated electricity to Navajo households that do not have power and building a new community and utility-scale clean energy projects. Once this economic engine is established, the Administration will continue to secure new investment and new jobs through ancillary industries like the assembly of solar panels and racking systems, further solidifying its role as a leader in the clean energy market.

During the discussion, Delegate Yazzie noted the need to establish partnerships with entities and individuals such as General  Clark , for the Nation to move in the direction of renewable energy development, especially in the state of New Mexico.

President Nez also referenced the “Energy Transition Act” in the state of New Mexico, which was approved by the New Mexico Legislature and signed into law by New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham, requiring public utilities to acquire renewable resources until electricity generation is 100-percent carbon-free by the year 2045.

The bill also set aside funds for workforce development and economic development opportunities, including $2 million for the Navajo Nation, which the Nez-Lizer Administration intends to use for a solar energy development project at Paragon Ranch in New Mexico.

“The world around us is moving ahead with clean energy, and the Navajo Nation cannot afford to be left behind, especially when we have many sources of clean energy that can be harnessed to benefit our people. Our Nation has great potential to become energy independent,” said Vice President Lizer.

The Office of the President and Vice President thank General  Wesley  K.  Clark  for visiting the Navajo Nation, and the Administration looks forward to building upon the partnership.

The post Nez-Lizer Administration Welcomes Army General Wesley K. Clark to the Navajo Nation appeared first on Native News Online.

[Category: Currents]

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Published July 15, 2019

By Cherokee Nation Principal  Chief  Bill John Baker

Our ability as a government to communicate with our citizens has just taken a great leap forward. The Cherokee Nation’s website – Cherokee.org – relaunched July 1. The overhaul, the first in more than eight years, creates a better user experience on the website that operates as our digital front door to the world. A more sophisticated website has been our vision for some time now, along with the goal of making it easier for visitors to find the information that is important to them. The revamped site includes updated content, departmental contacts and cleaner navigation so that our tribal citizens can find the services they need more quickly.

Chief Bill John Baker

For the past few months, Cherokee Nation departments have collaborated with our Information Technology and Communications offices to determine how best to update their information  from  our old site. Outdated information has been removed. Program content has been reviewed, augmented and, in many cases, completely rewritten. With continued input  from each department, the site’s new management system will give Cherokee Nation the ability to keep the site’s information fresh and relevant.

By transitioning our website to a more responsive, mobile-friendly platform, we expect it to grow as an online community, as tribal citizens and others come to rely on it for receiving information. We’ve focused on the ease of navigation, along with streamlining and reorganizing important material. At the top of the page, you’ll notice a section called “Find Your Way,” where some of our most popular links are listed, including language, citizenship, vehicle tags and health care.

A simple drop-down menu offers easy access to all of our services, basics about our government, employment opportunities throughout Cherokee Nation and our entities, and helpful links for planning your next visit. Homepage links to our popular social media accounts make it easier than ever to find our official presence on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube. Our TV show, “Osiyo, Voices of the Cherokee People,” our radio show, “Cherokee Voices, Cherokee Sounds,” and the Anadisgoi newsroom now have direct links. The new Cherokee.org has also been optimized for viewing across your mobile devices, since we know many of our citizens now use smart phones and tablets to access the web.

Towards the bottom of the page is a colorful section, called “What’s Happening,” that will change regularly. What’s Happening showcases program deadlines, new services and opportunities to watch live-streaming content, such as cultural presentations and Tribal Council meetings.

As always, there’s going to be room for improvement. We know that, and we appreciate all feedback  from tribal citizens. We’ll be adding department photos, more historical and cultural information, a map of the Cherokee Nation, and other key items in the coming weeks.

We invite you to visit the all-new Cherokee.org today. If you have suggestions or comments, please send them to communications@cherokee.org.

 

The post Cherokee Nation Launches Improved Website appeared first on Native News Online.

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Published July 15, 2019

ISABELLA INDIAN RESERVATION — The Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe (SCIT) announces that U.S. Representative Deb Haaland, a tribal citizen of the Pueblo of Laguna Tribe, will visit the Tribe on July 26 and 27, 2019. During her visit, Rep. Haaland will attend the Tribe’s Annual Freedom Walk and the 35th Annual SCIT Powwow.

Rep. Haaland, the first female American Indian to ever prside over a debate in Congress at the Speaker’s chair.

Rep. Haaland became one of two of the first American Indian women ever elected to Congress. She was elected to represent the 1st Congressional District of New Mexico in November 2018. She and Sharice Davids (3rd District-Kansas) were sworn into Congress in January 2019. Since becoming a member of Congress, Rep. Haaland has worked tirelessly on behalf of American Indian and Alaska Native issues that impact Indian Country.

The Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe’s Annual Freedom Walk is a walk that promotes an alcohol-free and drug-free lifestyle. The event begins with breakfast at 7:00 a.m on Saturday, July 27, 2019. The walk will begin at 9:00 a.m. at the tribal gymand proceed to the campground where the powwow will be held.

Rep. Haaland will be a dignitary as part of Grand Entry for the 35th Annual SCIT Powwow at 12 noon.

 

The post Rep. Haaland to Visit Saginaw Chippewa Tribe – Will Participate at Freedom Walk and Powwow appeared first on Native News Online.

[Category: Currents]

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Published July 15, 2019

ISABELLA INDIAN RESERVATION — The Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe (SCIT) announces that U.S. Representative Deb Haaland, a tribal citizen of the Pueblo of Laguna Tribe, will visit the Tribe on July 26 and 27, 2019. During her visit, Rep. Haaland will attend the Tribe’s Annual Freedom Walk and the 35th Annual SCIT Powwow.

Rep. Haaland, the first female American Indian to ever prside over a debate in Congress at the Speaker’s chair.

Rep. Haaland became one of two of the first American Indian women ever elected to Congress. She was elected to represent the 1st Congressional District of New Mexico in November 2018. She and Sharice Davids (3rd District-Kansas) were sworn into Congress in January 2019. Since becoming a member of Congress, Rep. Haaland has worked tirelessly on behalf of American Indian and Alaska Native issues that impact Indian Country.

The Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe’s Annual Freedom Walk is a walk that promotes an alcohol-free and drug-free lifestyle. The event begins with breakfast at 7:00 a.m on Saturday, July 27, 2019. The walk will begin at 9:00 a.m. at the tribal gymand proceed to the campground where the powwow will be held.

Rep. Haaland will be a dignitary as part of Grand Entry for the 35th Annual SCIT Powwow at 12 noon.

 

The post Rep. Haaland to Visit Saginawa Chippewa Tribe – Will Participate at Freedom Walk and Powwow appeared first on Native News Online.

[Category: Currents]

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Published July 14, 2019

Native News Online Photographs by Levi Rickert

HOPKINS, Mich. — Hundreds of spectators enjoyed the drumming and dancing at the Sweetgrass 2019 Moon Powwow, sponsored by the Gun Lake Tribe of Pottawatomi Indians, on Saturday at the Tribe’s powwow grounds at Jijak in Hopkins, Michigan.

The powwow continues on Fun-Day Sunday from 10:30 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.

 

The post Gun Lake Tribe’s ” Sweetgrass 2019 Moon” Powwow Photographs appeared first on Native News Online.

[Category: Currents]

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Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Bill John Baker, Seminole Nation Chief Greg. P. Chilcoat, Muscogee (Creek) Nation Principal Chief James R. Floyd, Choctaw Nation Chief Gary Batton and Chickasaw Nation Governor Bill Anoatubby sign a resolution opposing Gov. Stitt’s repudiation of the State-tribal gaming compacts on Friday, July 12.

Published July 14, 2019

OKLAHOMA CITY — The Inter-Tribal Council of the Five Civilized Tribes (ITC) provided a unified, formal and firm response to Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt’s recent repudiation of the Oklahoma Model Tribal Gaming Compact through a joint resolution signed by the leaders of the Cherokee, Chickasaw, Choctaw, Muscogee (Creek) and Seminole Nations. The Tribal leaders unanimously agreed and adopted the resolution at the Inter-Tribal Council meeting today at the River Spirit Casino Resort in Tulsa, Okla.

The ITC is an organization that unites the tribal governments of the Cherokee, Chickasaw, Choctaw, Muscogee (Creek), and Seminole Nations.

Muscogee (Creek) Nation Principal Chief James R. Floyd, Choctaw Nation Chief Gary Batton, Seminole Nation Chief Greg. P. Chilcoat, Chickasaw Nation Governor Bill Anoatubby, and Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Bill John Baker hold the resolution opposing Gov. Stitt’s repudiation of the State-tribal gaming compacts. The resolution was signed Friday, July 12.

Leaders of all five nations, which collectively represent more than 750,000 Native people, jointly signed the resolution outlining a clear and strong response to Governor Stitt’s letter dated July 5, 2019, proposing the Tribes negotiate a new Class III gaming compact.

Tribal leaders expressed their disappointment in the action by Gov. Stitt to take a matter of such great importance to the media before engaging in respectful and purposeful conversations given the complexity of the compacts and the law. The ITC memorialized through the joint resolution their collective intent to reject the state’s attempt to unlawfully and unilaterally terminate the compact.

The gaming industry has become a significant driver of Oklahoma’s economy, employing over 55,000 Oklahomans, primarily in rural areas, and paying more than $1.5 billion in exclusivity fees over the past 15 years, mostly for public education. In response to the exclusive fee arrangement outlined in the compacts, Tribes have invested hundreds of millions of those dollars into education, roads, health care, public safety, and tourism to support the betterment of our state for the benefit of all residents. The tribes’ investments have allowed the state to channel tax revenue to other high priority needs.

During Friday’s general session of the ITC, the tribal leaders detailed the extensive legal history and complexity surrounding gaming compacts and highlighted the current compact, which was approved by Oklahoma voters on November 4, 2004, and approved by the U.S. Secretary of Interior.

The tribes also detailed their concerns that Gov. Stitt made no proposal of any terms, nor presented a framework, for any renegotiation. That noted, the ITC pledged their support for the continuation of the exclusive fee structure and amounts outlined in the current compact. They underscored their confidence in the legal reality that the compact does not expire, but in fact renews on January 1, 2020.

Joint Statement from the Five Tribal Leaders:

“We have considered the state of Oklahoma a trustworthy partner through the years. Working together we have made strides in building a better, stronger and more prosperous Oklahoma for the benefit of the hundreds of thousands of members of our Tribes who live and work here as well as all residents of this great State. We can trace the starting point of our constructive partnership to the carefully crafted and balanced approach represented in the current compact negotiated in a respectful manner between the State of Oklahoma and the sovereign Tribes residing in Oklahoma. This compact represents a continuing and mutually beneficial partnership. The recent action of Governor Stitt puts into question his sincerity to work with us in a cooperative manner moving ahead. We are resolute in our position, and it is our hope Governor Stitt and his advisors will not attempt any bad faith interference on the compact which could set back the progress we have achieved by working together.”

Bill John Baker, Principal Chief, The Cherokee Nation

Bill Anoatubby, Governor, The Chickasaw Nation

Gary Batton, Chief, The Choctaw Nation

James R. Floyd, Principal Chief, The Muscogee (Creek) Nation

Greg P. Chilcoat, Chief, The Seminole Nation

The post Oklahoma Tribal Leaders Sign Joint Resolution Opposing Governor’s Repudiation of the State/Tribal Gaming Compacts appeared first on Native News Online.

[Category: Currents]

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[l] at 7/13/19 10:00pm

Navajo Times | Ravonelle Yazzie
Victoria Largo shows off her peperoni pizza.

Published July 14, 2019

WINDOW ROCK — In 1996, Victoria Largo was hustling to sell baked goods and ice-cream in her home community of Crownpoint. Amid the hustle and bustle, her daughter came up with the idea of selling pizza.

This is something Largo had never thought of trying.

Thus, Victoria’s Pizza came into being. Her dough recipe came from her paternal grandmother and from there she experimented to create the crust she has today.

“What makes my pizza different is that we use top quality ingredients,” she said. “My crust is homemade, all from scratch. Nothing artificial. It’s all pure homemade from Bluebird flour.”

Largo’s pizza was created on the Navajo Nation through trial and error. When Largo first started to sell pizza, she would go over to their local hospital and set up on something similar to a TV food tray.

She would have up to three pizzas and sell them by the slice for $2.50. Fast-forward two decades: she has sold enough pizza to not only raise her six children but also to upgrade her digs. Largo now has an RV and concession trailer that she uses to sell.

Editor’s Note: This article was first published by the Navajo Times. Used with permission. All rights reserved.

The post From a Tray to a Trailer: A Crusty Entrepreneur Brings in the Dough appeared first on Native News Online.

[Category: Currents]

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[l] at 7/13/19 10:00pm

Published July 14, 2019

WINDOW ROCK, Ariz. — Eve’s Fund for Native American Health Initiatives is proud to announce that its flagship program — ThinkFirst Navajo — has launched a new injury prevention initiative called Buckle Up Navajo Newborns. Last week, 50 high-end car seats, purchased by Eve’s Fund, were delivered to the Navajo Department of Transportation’s Highway Safety Division.

Previous published news articles have highlighted the fact that one of highest child mortality rates in the country is on the Navajo Nation with the leading cause of preventable deaths for children coming from motor vehicle crashes.

According to the Navajo Nation Department of Transportation, only 27 to 30 percent of children are put in car seats or booster seats. Furthermore, given the large size and rural nature of the Navajo Nation and limited number of police officers, law enforcement is nearly impossible.

“So many deaths and injuries of Navajo infants and young children could be prevented just by buckling them up safely in car seats,” said Eve’s Fund president, Barbara Crowell Roy, “and now there can be no excuse not to do so. We are committed to trying to raise enough funds so that every Navajo newborn can be put in a sturdy car seat. The seats we are purchasing will work for newborns up to children weighing 65 pounds, so parents with limited resources and access won’t have to keep buying new seats as their child grows. “

Jodee Dennison, director of ThinkFirst Navajo, emphasizes that mothers who receive the car seats must be trained by special trainers and notes statistics, which show that up to 75 percent of car seats, are not properly installed.

Norma Bowman, program manager of the Navajo Department of Highway Safety said, “It is a huge benefit when organizations such as Eve’s Fund reach out to assist our traffic safety efforts on Navajo, and we are grateful for this partnership and collaborative effort. Our department, with our staff of National Certified Child Passenger Safety Technicians, will provide the necessary educational resources to ensure that children are properly restrained and receive hands-on instruction for the various stages of their child restraint use. All expectant mothers and anyone else in need of car seats should call: 505.371.8326.”

The post ThinkFirst Navajo Debuts “Buckle Up Navajo Newborns” Program and Donates 50 Car Seats to the Navajo Nation appeared first on Native News Online.

[Category: Currents]

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[l] at 7/13/19 10:00pm

Xoie Jones, Serenity Wisdom and Hazel Wallace work together during Head Start class. With more than 30 years of experience, Wallace looks forward to continuing to work with future generations of children in the Head Start setting.

Published July 14, 2019

ADA, Okla.   The Chickasaw Nation Head Start program turns 40 this year, and Hazel Wallace has been involved since its inception. From having her children in the inaugural class and volunteering her time as a parent-teacher, to assisting parents with resources they may need, Wallace has dedicated her life to caring for children.

Officially having worked at the Chickasaw Nation Head Start in Ada for more than 33 years, Wallace’s tenure with the program began years before.

Her oldest boys, Jeremy and Jason, were two of the original 33 students in the class of 1979, the same year she began working as a volunteer. Her two younger children would also eventually participate in the program, as would her grandchildren.

“My sons were in the first class,” Wallace said. “I got involved because my two oldest boys went to Head Start. My husband, Joe, and I would do whatever the teachers needed of us. I love Head Start, the people who work here, and the children. I feel that Head Start prepares our children to succeed in public school.”

Wallace began working as a paid staffer in 1986.

The new Chickasaw Nation Head Start facility in Sulphur opened in 2018. The Chickasaw Nation has Head Start and Early Childhood Development programs in Ada, Ardmore, Sulphur and Tishomingo.

As a federally funded program, Head Start is designed to promote school readiness for children up to the age of five from low-income families. Studies conducted by the federal government have shown children who complete Head Start are better students overall, including into their high school years.

“The success I have as a parent I partly attribute to Head Start,” Wallace said. “I am proud of my children and grandchildren. I feel like a success because I was able to be here with them, first as a volunteer, then as a teacher.”

The Chickasaw Nation has a proven history of valuing those involved with education. Early in her career, the tribe assisted Wallace with attaining certifications in early childhood development, a requirement for Head Start teachers.

“The Chickasaw Nation has taken care of my educational needs,” Wallace said. “They helped me receive the CDA (Child Development Associate credential) so I could teach. They helped me get my license to drive the bus, if needed. I feel honored they continue to invest in my education.”

While teaching continues to be a part of Wallace’s life, it is not what she currently does on a daily basis.

“My job is a family service worker,” Wallace said. “While I often find myself in the classrooms, my daily function is to make sure children are healthy and receiving the support they deserve.”

As a family service worker, Wallace arranges hearing, dental and other health screenings. Wallace works with parents to make sure they understand any additional services for which their family may qualify.

“If parents need something for their children, I find the resources to help them,” she said.

To be better prepared for her role as a family service worker, Wallace attended East Central University where she received a Bachelor of Social Work in the spring semester of 2019.

“I am the first person in my family to finish college,” Wallace said. “I couldn’t have done it without the support from my family. My co-workers were really supportive as well.”

Wallace said she plans to continue supporting the education of children, ensuring the prosperity of the Chickasaw Nation for generations to come.

About the Chickasaw Nation Early Childhood and Head Start Program

The Chickasaw Nation Early Childhood and Head Start program is a center-based federal and tribally funded program that promotes school readiness of children from ages 3 to 5 years.

The program philosophy is based on the principle that early childhood education should address children’s needs in all areas of development: physical, social, emotional and cognitive. It should provide support and assistance to all those who affect the child’s development. The child’s entire family, as well as the community, should be involved.

The Chickasaw Nation Early Childhood and Head Start program is family-focused. The family is viewed as the most important influence in a child’s life. To meet these needs, the program offers components in education, parent/guardian involvement, health, social services and services for children with disabilities.

Through an interdisciplinary approach of all components and parent policy council group, this philosophy is reflected in every aspect of the early childhood education experience. The center environments will provide children the opportunity to develop to their maximum potential.

The Chickasaw Nation Head Start has grown to include centers in Ada, Ardmore, Sulphur and Tishomingo.

With a long history and national funding, Head Start is one of the most studied social programs in the U.S.

According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services webpage, Early Head Start children show significantly better social-emotional, language and cognitive development. Children who attend Early Head Start and transition to Head Start are better prepared for traditional school than children who do not attend Head Start.

Head Start children make progress toward norms in language, literacy and math. The children also score at the norm on letter-word knowledge by the end of the year, and have better social skills, impulse control and approaches to learning. Head Start children also show a decrease in problem behaviors, such as aggression and hyperactivity.

Head Start children are more likely to receive dental checkups and have healthy eating patterns than non-participants. They have lower body mass index scores and are generally in better health. Children in Head Start are also more likely to be immunized.

The lasting effects of these benefits can be felt for a lifetime. According to an article published in the American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, former Head Start students are more likely to graduate high school and attend at least one year of college. They are also more likely to be employed as adults.

The post Two Generations & Counting: Chickasaw Nation Head Start Turns 40 appeared first on Native News Online.

[Category: Currents]

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[l] at 7/13/19 8:43pm

The Montana Standard ran this photograph of the vandalized home.

Published July 13, 2019

BUTTE, Mont. — At the beginning of June, the local newspaper reported that a woman in Butte had her home vandalized with racist anti-Indian graffiti. Vandals spray painted “Go Home,” “prairie n—r,” and “f—k you Indian lover” on the side of her trailer. The woman, Miki Chessmore, said this was the latest in a string of vandalism that started when she rented a room to an American Indian tenant. Police had no suspects in what the county sheriff correctly called a hate crime.

 

The 65-year-old Chessmore told the reporter she had two major concerns. The first was trying to cover up the racist graffiti. She and her tenant had managed to paint over it with some primer, but she lacked the resources to do anything else. The second more serious issue was that she was afraid to be in her own home at night. “I don’t know that these people wouldn’t do bodily harm to me,” she said. The fear was warranted, as this incident wasn’t just the most recent. It was also an escalation of bias-based actions directed at Chessmore and her tenant.

“I don’t know what they will do next,” Chessmore told the newspaper, “but people ought to be aware of the hatred and racism going on here.”

That’s exactly why MHRN got involved. MHRN staffer Travis McAdam visited Chessmore at her home the morning the news story was published. He talked with her and offered MHRN’s help in organizing a community response to the hate crime, in addition to trying to facilitate some efforts to fix her trailer and address her safety concerns.

MHRN has helped communities respond to these types of incidents for almost 30 years. It’s important for communities to unequivocally denounce hate crimes when they occur. These types of bias-based crimes impact not only the immediate victim, but they also send a message to members of the community who are part of that group, in this case American Indians. MHRN’s experience shows that, by elevating these types of incidents, the victims are safer since more people are aware of what has happened and are paying attention. A public response also helps reinforce with local law enforcement the need to take these incidents seriously.

When McAdam started reaching out to folks in the community, he discovered that a local painter had already posted online that he would repaint Chessmore’s home for free. Collins Painting got in touch with her and had its workers prepping her home within days of the report. About a week after the newspaper story, Collins Painting had finished its work. Chessmore had said she was worried that the vandals would come back and ruin the new paint job. Collins Painting told her that, if that happened, they would come back and cover it up! Chessmore and concerned community members can’t express how wonderful it was that Collins Painting stepped up, without even being asked, and painted her home for free.

While Collins Painting was doing its work, MHRN was reaching out to allies in the community to organize a community response. Activists with the Butte Area Rising Coalition and Indian People’s Action joined faith leaders and concerned community members at a planning meeting held a few days after the initial report. This group decided to hold a march and rally on Saturday, June 15, in Emma Park to denounce the hate crime and show support for Chessmore and her tenant. Folks also decided to try and raise some funds at the rally for Chessmore to make some security upgrades to her home.

“We’re inviting and asking the community to stand and march with us in solidarity against racism, bigotry, and the forces of hate in our community,” MHRN’s McAdam said in the press release for the event. “We want to make it clear that the targeting of people and constituencies in our community, and the fear it creates, won’t be ignored. Instead, we will stand together and continue working to make our community a better and safer place for everyone.”

The “CommUnity Rally Against Hate” was held on June 15 and began in Uptown Butte, with people marching from the Imagine Butte Resource Center to Emma Park. The lineup of speakers for the rally in the park included:

    • Terry Falcon providing an Indigenous opening prayer
    • Miki Chessmore, a target of the hate crime
    • Cheryl Eagle of Indian People’s Action
    • Geoff Gallus of the Butte Area Rising Coalition
    • Donavon Hawk, a local community activist
    • Mokai Schux Malope, a Zulu delegation member and Cultural Exchange Coordinator from South Africa

Close to 100 people attended the CommUnity Rally. Some sported homemade signs with slogans like “Hate was Never Great” and “Hate is not a Family Value.” Chessmore told attendees how difficult the situation had been, but she told those attending, “I’m just glad there are people that care.” Unfortunately, by the time of the event, her tenant had left Butte because of the hate crime.

“It means the world to know that there are people who care,” Chessmore said at the rally. “And that’s the only way we’re going to put a stop to it. Is the fact that you all came out. You’re all helping, and I thank you.”

Cheryl Eagle of Indian People’s Action, an enrolled Blackfeet member, said she loves Butte and its friendly people. However, she told rally goers that it’s still a hard place to be brown, which makes it like most other communities. “There are seven reservations in Montana, and sometimes we are treated like we are strangers to this land,” Eagle said. “It blows my mind.”

MHRN’s McAdam, who emceed the rally, closed the event by invoking the common “Butte Strong” mantra. “Let’s make ‘Butte Strong’ mean that what we’re working for and what we want are welcoming and inclusive communities where all of us are safe,” he said.

At the rally, a collection was taken up to address the security issues at Chessmore’s home. Those attending contributed more than $420. Community members also set up an online GoFundMe campaign that raised an additional $435. Chessmore has purchased security cameras and is currently exploring other measures to take.

You can find Montana Public Radio’s coverage of the CommUnity Rally Against Hate here.

Editor’s Note: This article was first published on the Montana Human Rights Network’s blog. Used with permission. All rights reserved. 

The post Butte, Montana Responds to Hate Crime Against American Indians appeared first on Native News Online.

[Category: Currents]

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[l] at 7/12/19 10:00pm

Published July 13, 2019

BELLINGHAM, Wash. — This week, the Northwest Indian College (NWIC) has been facing a cyberattack identified as the Ryuk ransomware virus. The outbreak has corrupted many internal files on our systems, including backups and legacy data.

The College has contacted the appropriate authorities to determine next steps.

While the College is still open regular business hours, services will be limited. Face-to-face classes will still run. Video conferencing hybrid classes will be down temporarily.

NWIC staff is diligently working to secure the network, and apologizes for any inconvenience this may have caused. The College urges others in the community to take extra precautions to secure and back up their networks, with a heavy emphasis on offsite or cloud backups of critical systems and data.

Please stay tuned to the College’s official Facebook page and website for more information.

The post Northwest Indian College Hit with Ransomware appeared first on Native News Online.

[Category: Currents]

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[l] at 7/12/19 10:00pm

Published July 13, 2019

WASHINGTON —  U.S. Senators Tom Udall (D-N.M.), vice chair of the Senate Indian Affairs Committee and   Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii),   chair of the Special Committee on the Climate Crisis, along with   U.S. Senators Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.), John Tester (D-Mont.), Michael Bennet (D-Colo.), Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.), Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.), Tina Smith (D-Minn.), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), Jeffrey A. Merkley (D-Ore.), Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.), Edward Markey (D-Mass.),   and   Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.), are asking for input from American Indian, Alaska Native, and Native Hawaiian Community Leaders on the effects of climate change on their communities, seeking to foster a dialogue with Native communities on potential solutions and responses to this urgent threat.

“As the National Climate Assessment recently confirmed, climate change is having a disproportionate impact on [Native] communities.  As such, we would like to hear directly from you, leaders who are key voices for your communities, about how climate change threatens your traditional ways of life, economic opportunities, and overall wellbeing,”   wrote the senators. “It is well past time for Congress to take action in partnership with you and your communities to address the risks and impacts associated with climate change.”

“Your voices, stories of current impacts, and ideas for solutions the federal government can take to address the dire impacts of climate change are critical. We welcome your recommendations for federal action that will help provide your communities with the tools necessary to address the harms associated with climate change,”   the senators wrote.

The senators, Democratic members that sit on the Indian Affairs Committee and/or the Special Committee on the Climate Crisis, are seeking a response to a series of questions regarding the leaders’ perspectives by September 13, 2019.

Comments from American Indian, Alaska Native, and Native Hawaiian Community Leaders can be submitted to:Community_Leaders_Feedback@indian.senate.gov

The full text of the letter can be found below and HERE.

Dear American Indian, Alaska Native, and Native Hawaiian Community Leaders:

We are writing to solicit your views on the impacts of climate change to your communities and begin a dialogue on potential solutions and adaptive responses.  As the National Climate Assessment recently confirmed, climate change is having a disproportionate impact on your communities.  As such, we would like to hear directly from you, leaders who are key voices for your communities, about how climate change threatens your traditional ways of life, economic opportunities, and overall wellbeing.  It is well past time for Congress to take action in partnership with you and your communities to address the risks and impacts associated with climate change.

American Indians and Alaskan Natives maintain a government-to-government relationship with the United States cemented in treaties and reflected in federal law, and the United States recognizes a special political and trust relationship with the Native Hawaiian community.  Any discussion on federal action regarding climate change must include your perspectives.

Your voices, stories of current impacts, and ideas for solutions the federal government can take to address the dire impacts of climate change are critical. We welcome your recommendations for federal action that will help provide your communities with the tools necessary to address the harms associated with climate change.

To begin our discussion, we ask that you send us thoughts and comments by Friday, September 13, 2019.  Below are some questions to prompt ideas.

  1. What policies, regulations, and programs have proven particularly useful in assisting your communities in mitigating and responding to climate change impacts?
  2. Are there policies or strategies that your communities are using to address climate change that could scale for implementation at the federal level, including traditional knowledge?
  3. What actions or policies could federal agencies take within existing authorities to improve climate change mitigation and resilience in your communities?
  4. What new policies would you recommend Congress consider to improve climate change resilience in your communities, reduce emissions of heat-trapping pollution, increase the development and availability of renewable resources, or capture or off-set emissions of heat-trapping pollution? 

Your knowledge and experience on this issue is invaluable, and we look forward to receiving your input.  Please send your thoughts and comments to   Community_Leaders_Feedback@indian.senate.gov  

 

Sincerely,

The post Democratic Senators Seek Input from American Indian, Alaska Native & Native Hawaiian Community Leaders about Climate Change appeared first on Native News Online.

[Category: Currents]

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[l] at 7/12/19 10:00pm

Sean Sherman

Published July 13, 2019

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. —  The Notah Begay III (NB3) Foundation has announced Sean Sherman, known as the Sioux Chef, will be the keynote speaker at the Healthy Kids! Healthy Futures! Conference at the Sandia Resort & Casino in September.

2019 James Beard Leadership Awardee, Sean Sherman is the founder/CEO of The Sioux Chef. Born on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota, Sherman is Oglala Lakota and has been cooking across the United States and around the globe for the last 30 years. His main culinary focus has been on the revitalization and awareness of indigenous food systems in a modern culinary context. Sherman has studied on his own to determine the foundations of these food systems which include the knowledge of Native American farming techniques, wild food usage and harvesting, land stewardship, salt and sugar making, hunting and fishing, food preservation, Native American migration histories, elemental cooking techniques, and Native culture and history in general to gain a full understanding of bringing back a sense of Native American cuisine to today’s world.

Attendees will be treated to an indigenous, naturally sources meal from Sioux Chef’s cookbook, “The Sioux Chef’s Indigenous Kitchen.” Join us as Sean Sherman takes participants on his journey of redefining North American cuisine through the understanding and utilization of indigenous food knowledge. Join Sean Sherman, The Sioux Chef and many other presenters for the Healthy Kids! Healthy Futures! Conference. WHAT: Healthy Kids! Healthy Futures! Conference WHEN: September 9-11, 2019 WHERE: Sandia Resort & Casino – 30 Rainbow Rd, Albuquerque, NM 87113, USA CLICK to go to the Healthy Kids! Healthy Futures! Conference website.

The post Sean Sherman, “The Sioux Chef,” to Keynote the 2019 Healthy Kids! Healthy Futures! Conference September 9-11, 2019. appeared first on Native News Online.

[Category: Currents]

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[l] at 7/12/19 10:00pm

Tribal leaders, including Navajo Nation Council Delegate Charlaine Tso and Vice President Myron Lizer, meet with Utah Governor Gary Herbert at the 2019 Governor’s Native American Summit on Thursday, July 11, 2019 in Orem, Utah.

Published July 13, 2019

OREM, Utah – Delegate Charlaine Tso (Mexican Water, Aneth, Teecnospos, Tółikan, Red Mesa) addressed six major topics to Governor Gary Herbert and the tribal leaders at the Utah Native American Summit on behalf of the Utah Navajo Commission and the Navajo Nation Council July 11.

Delegate Tso advocated for major Utah Navajo roads issues with respect to rights-of-way, B-road funding, State Route 162 and McElmo bridge, a direct in-state route for Navajo Mountain Chapter, and the Navajo Code Talker Highway-designated sections of State Routes 162 and 163.

“Having a seat at the table is what all of our tribal leaders have worked towards,” Delegate Tso stated, “We commend and encourage the State of Utah in its efforts to partner with us to serve the elders, students, and families of southern Utah.”

Delegate Tso also commended the Utah Attorney General’s Office for delivering a supportive testimony to the Water, Ocean, and Wildlife Subcommittee of the United States Congress regarding the Navajo Utah Water Settlement Act. On behalf of the Utah Navajo Commission, Delegate Tso requested the state’s remaining allocation of $6 million into the trust fund for Utah Navajo communities’ water projects.

Delegate Tso expressed appreciation to the Utah legislature and the Office of the Governor for providing $1.1 million in matching funds for Phase II of the San Juan Fiber Optic Infrastructure Project. Phase I extended fiber to the communities of White Mesa, Bluff, and Montezuma Creek. Phase II will extend the fiber from Bluff to Monument Valley and then to Navajo Mountain.

Regarding the Bears Ears National Monument, Delegate Tso requested support from the state in seeking to increase Native American representation on the recently approved Bears Ears National Monument/Monument Advisory Committee. Delegate Tso shared that most members approved by the US Dept. of the Interior have opposed the creation of the monument and that the committee does not represent the best interests of all citizens.

Delegate Tso continued with a request that the State of Utah Office of the Governor and Lieutenant Governor and the Attorney General’s Office monitor closely efforts to undermine Navajo voting rights in San Juan County. Delegate Tso pointed to specific efforts to separate the county as issues of great concern to the Commission.

Commending the 2014 Executive Order on Tribal Consultation, Delegate Tso advocated for the inclusion of the Utah Division of Indian Affairs in the governor’s cabinet. Delegate Tso requested the governor’s presence in the next town hall meeting hosted by US Representative John Curtis (R-03) on the Utah portion of the Navajo Nation.

Navajo Nation Vice President Myron Lizer and Delegate Mark Freeland (Becenti, Crownpoint, Huerfano, Lake Valley, Nageezi, Nahodishgish, Tse’ii’ahí, Whiterock) were also in attendance at the summit to provide further advocacy for the communities in the Utah portion of the Navajo Nation. Delegate Freeland chairs the Naabik’íyáti’ Committee State Task Force, which advocates at the state level for the Navajo Nation.

The post Navajo Nation Delegates Advocate before Utah State Leadership at Governor’s Native American Summit appeared first on Native News Online.

[Category: Currents]

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