Race Counts is conducting a localized analysis on The Los Angeles Times data desk on “How PLACE and RACE are fueling a pandemic” with actively updated tables, graphs, and analysis on how the most vulnerable populations are being impacted by COVID-19.

The Navajo Nation has reported another 172 new COVID-19 cases as well as an additional 13 deaths, and Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez has extended the tribe’s stay-at-home order until June 7 to combat the recent spike in confirmed cases.

The South Korean government has announced the 70th Anniversary of the Korean War Commemoration Committee will deliver 10,000 face masks and other health protective items to the members of the Navajo Nation who fought in the 1950-53 Korean War.

Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez and Vice President Myron Lizer are voicing their concerns over the National Park Service’s reopening of the Grand Canyon National Park that could bring tourists back to Arizona while the tribe continues to fight against the highest rate of  per capita COVID-19 cases in the country.

The Lumbee Tribe of North Carolina has partnered with the emergency relief nonprofit CORE Response and the Robeson County Department of Public Health to provide a drive-thru COVID-19 testing site at the Lumbee Tribe Housing Complex.

The Eastern Shoshone and Northern Arapaho tribes continue to enforce stay-at-home orders despite the rest of Wyoming not enforcing such restrictions.

The Bristol Bay salmon fishery, one of the largest in the nation, is battling new COVID-19 concerns amongst its workers as the salmon season nears launch.

Keep reading for a full news update. 



Race Counts, Maria Cabildo, Elycia Mulholland Graves, John Kim, and Michael Russo

No matter where we live, the color of our skin or where we come from, we all want to be safe and protect our loved ones from COVID-19. But race counts – even during an all-encompassing global pandemic. Even when the crisis has impacted every community and every walk of life. Our research shows that race matters in a particularly sharp and uncompromising way in this crisis — and unless our collective response starts with addressing our unequal conditions, none of us will be safe.

Korea Reaches Out To Native Americans, Iran, Abkhazia with COVID-19 Supplies

The Korea Herald, Park Han-na, May 18

The South Korean government and nonprofit organizations are offering quarantine and medical supplies to countries fighting the novel coronavirus in a bid to boost relations in challenging times.

According to the Ministry of Patriots and Veterans Affairs on Monday, the 70th Anniversary of the Korean War Commemoration Committee will deliver 10,000 face masks and other health protective items to the members of native American Navajo tribe who fought in the 1950-53 Korean War.

Lumbee Tribal Citizens Getting Drive-Thru COVID-19 Tests

Native News Online, May 18

The Lumbee Tribe of North Carolina has partnered with the emergency relief nonprofit CORE Response and the Robeson County Department of Public Health to provide a drive-thru COVID-19 testing site at the Lumbee Tribe Housing Complex.

COVID-19 Claims Life Of Seminole Tribe’s Fire Chief Donald Dipetrillo

Native News Online, Mikayla Steele, May 17

The Seminole Tribe of Florida is mourning the loss of its fire department chief. Fire Chief Donald DiPetrillo died on April 30 after a battle with the COVID-19 virus. Chief DiPetrillo was 70.

Navajo Nation COVID-19 Saturday Update: 13 More Deaths Reported – Death Toll Stands At 140

Native News Online, Levi Rickert, May 16

The Navajo Nation has recorded another 172 cases of the coronavirus, bringing the tribal nation’s total to 3,912 as of Saturday evening.

In Contrast To Wyoming, Wind River Tribes Counter COVID-19 With Aggressive Measures

Aspen Public Radio, Savannah Maher, May 16

For the past 140 years, the Eastern Shoshone and Northern Arapaho tribes have both called the Wind River Valley home. They didn’t choose to share this reservation – and it’s no secret that the two tribal governments don’t always agree. But since the start of the pandemic, they’ve been on the same page about one thing.

Actor Sean Penn & Celebrity Chef José Andrés Join Navajo Nation Pres. Nez At Food Distribution

Native News Online, Cindy Yurth, May 16

There was some rare good news on the Navajo Nation coronavirus front on Friday. New cases were down by more than half, no additional deaths, and four more people recovered.

COVID-19 And Sports In Native American Communities

Indian Country Today, May 16

Native American communities have been hit harder than others in the wake of the pandemic. The realities of lacking resources have been brought to the forefront during this time.

‘I Feel So Alone’

Indian Country Today, Joaqlin Estus, May 16

The messaging has been clear: Stay home. Remain apart. Social distance. But what if that means people are slipping into seclusion? Isolation and loneliness are linked to poor health, disease, and early death. Behavioral health specialists say a strong social network helps people stay steady, and to cope with and bounce back from hard times.

New COVID-19 Fears As Nation’s Top Salmon Season Nears Launch

Indian Country Today, Joaqlin Estus, May 16

A worker from out-of-state tested positive for COVID-19 in Dillingham where the enormous Bristol Bay sockeye salmon fishery is due to kick off in mid-to-late June. The Trident Seafoods worker had been in quarantine and does not require hospitalization. Trident Seafoods is transporting the individual out of Dillingham “out of an abundance of caution,” read a State of Alaska Department of Health and Social Services’ statement.

Kurt Bluedog Passes On After Dedicating Life To Indian Country

Indianz.com, Kurt Bluedog, May 15

Kurt BlueDog passed away due to cancer related complications. He was born to Jerena BlueDog on February 25, 1950, and delivered at home by his Grandfather, Elmer Rockwood Sr.

Nez-lizer Urge National Park Service To Keep Grand Canyon National Park Closed Due To COVID-19

Indianz.com, May 15

The Navajo Nation received notice on Thursday that the National Park Service plans to reopen Grand Canyon National Park on Friday, when Arizona’s current stay-at-home order expires. On Tuesday, Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey announced a phased reopening of select business sectors across Arizona. While many people are eager to come out of isolation, many others remain worried about a potential spike of positive COVID-19 cases and whether Arizona is prepared for reopening.

Navajo Nation Still Under Lockdown

Indian Country Today, May 15

Residents of the Navajo Nation will be under the strictest weekend lockdown yet, with grocery stores and gas stations closed, and even essential workers ordered to stay home.


Navajo Gaming Extends Closure Of Casinos Until At Least June 7

Native News Online, Levi Rickert, May 17

Even with tribal casinos beginning to reopen in parts of Indian Country, the Navajo Nation Gaming Enterprise’s board of directors on Friday extended the closure of all Navajo gaming operations.

Miss Indian World Reigns A Second Year

Indian Country Today, Sandra Hale Schulman, May 17

Many look forward to spending hours in a car with friends, relatives, and families to travel to Albuquerque, New Mexico. They drive long distances to spend days listening and watching to grand entries at the Gathering of Nations, rubbing elbows with other Natives from across the country, buying jewelry, attending concerts, experiencing the nightlife, and saving a spot with a blanket.

Bison Bring Spiritual Revitalization To Sioux, Assiniboine

Indian Country Today, May 17

Mike Matthews was 46 when he saw his first free-roaming buffalo. It was in the 1980s, but he still remembers how the animal wandered just north of the Missouri River that flows through the Fort Peck Indian Reservation.

Yale’s Indigenous Students Share Their Stories

Indian Country Today, Meghanlata Gupta, May 16

At Yale University, Indigenous people make up a small percentage of enrollment: Out of over 13,000 students, a little over 100 identify as American Indian, Alaska Native, Native Hawai’ian, First Nation or Indigenous more broadly.

Healthcare. Housing. Infrastructure. Indian Country’s ‘Status Quo Is In A Bad Spot’

Indian Country Today, Dalton Walker, May 15

A new $3 trillion Democratic-led rescue bill passed the House Friday night and includes $24 billion in funding for federally recognized tribal governments and tribal organizations.

Alaska’s Yupitt Nation Struggles To Keep Houses From Sinking Into The Kuskokwim River

Native News Online, May 15

Mike Williams, chief of the Yupitt Nation, is facing battles on two different fronts these days.

Williams is leading his nation’s fight to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus into the tribe’s village, located 30 miles from Bethel in southwestern Alaska.