Good morning, NUNAverse:
On February 10 and 11, MIT Solve is hosting a Virtual Indigenous Innovators Summit ahead of the 2021 Indigenous Communities Fellowship application launch on February 11. The event will provide an opportunity for Solve’s current Indigenous Communities Fellows, Solver teams, MIT faculty, and social impact leaders from Solve’s Member organizations to connect with one another, as well as prospective applicants to Solve’s 2021 Indigenous Communities Fellowship. Register for the two-day event here.
The second impeachment trial of former President Donald Trump will begin today at 1 P.M. EST with the Senate voting to formally adopt the agreed upon rules that will afford each side up to 16 hours to lay out their case. Up to four hours will be devoted to debating the constitutionality of impeaching a President who is no longer in office. If a simple majority of senators agree to move forward, as expected, the main part of the trial begins.
U.S. District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly rejected an attempt to shut down construction of Enbridge Energy’s replacement for its aging Line 3 crude oil pipeline across northern Minnesota, saying that tribal and environmental groups that filed for an injunction in late December to suspend construction failed to prove any permanent harm would result from allowing the work to proceed or that they’re likely to win on their broader legal arguments.
Six Indigenous artists have been awarded unrestricted $50,000 fellowships from United States Artists, a coalition of philanthropic organizations. The six are among 60 artists who received the 2021 USA Fellowships that recognize artists for both their “bold artistic vision and their contributions to the field.” Read more about all six Indigenous artists here.
Tearsheet reports on the FDIC’s 2019 survey of household use of banking and financial services which found that American Indian and Alaska Native communities had the highest rates of unbanked households at 16.3 percent. The survey, which was published in 2020, projected the rates of unbanked households to rise as a consequence of the coronavirus pandemic, which has disproportionately impacted Indigenous communities in the U.S.
Marketplace reports on the ongoing efforts to bring broadband access to tribal communities across the country, and how the recently announced $1 billion tribal broadband fund set up in the latest COVID-19 federal relief legislation will help bridge the digital gap.
Keep reading for a full news update.
What To Watch For As Donald J. Trump’s Impeachment Trial Begins
New York Times, Aishvarya Kavi and Zachary Montague, February 9
The second impeachment trial of former President Donald J. Trump begins on Tuesday, about a month after he was charged by the House with incitement of insurrection for his role in egging on a violent mob that stormed the Capitol on Jan. 6.
Montana Senator Backed An Extremist At Interior But Rejects A Native American Woman
Huffington Post, Chris D’Angelo, February 8
Sen. Steve Daines (R-Mont.) slammed President Joe Biden’s historic pick to lead the Interior Department, Rep. Deb Haaland (D-N.M.), as a “radical” on Friday and signaled he would not only vote against her confirmation but would attempt to block her nomination from advancing.
Judge Blocks Another Bid To Shut Down Line 3 Construction
Indian Country Today, Steve Karnowski, February 8
A federal judge has rejected another attempt by opponents to shut down construction work on Enbridge Energy’s replacement for its aging Line 3 crude oil pipeline across northern Minnesota. In an order filed Sunday, U.S. District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly said tribal and environmental groups that filed for an injunction in late December to suspend construction failed to prove any permanent harm would result from allowing the work to proceed or that they’re likely to win on their broader legal arguments.
LA County Working To Address Racial Disparities In COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution
CBS Los Angeles, February 8
The Los Angeles Department of Public Health Monday said it was working to address racial disparities in COVID-19 vaccine distribution.
Sunday Navajo Nation COVID-19 Update: 23 New Cases, One More Death
Native News Online, February 7
The Navajo Department of Health reported 23 new COVID-19 positive cases for the Navajo Nation and one more death. The total number of deaths is now 1,057 as of Sunday. Reports indicate that 15,234 individuals have recovered from COVID-19, and 235,948 COVID-19 tests have been administered. The total number of positive COVID-19 cases is now 28,897, including two delayed reported cases.
Why Super Bowl LV Should Be Kansas City Football’s Last With That Name — And Might Well Be
NBC News, Simon Moya-Smith, February 8
Racism is always ugly, but it’s even uglier when it’s welcomed on a national stage. And, make no mistake, the Kansas City football team’s name is racist. Kansas City’s NFL team— who are playing the Tampa Bay Buccaneers during Super Bowl LV on Sunday — are just delaying the inevitable. They will eventually drop their name. They will be forced to do away with the dehumanization and commodification of Native Americans that are their name and logo and beloved team traditions. It will happen. They’re just being stubborn right now and refusing to simply ride the massive wave of change occurring at this moment in this country.
‘Indian Country Has Been Plagued By Systemic Red-Lining’: Indigenous Communities Are The Most Unbanked In The U.S.
Tearsheet, Rimal Farrukh, February 9
Indigenous communities in the U.S remain widely under represented in financial services. According to the FDIC’s 2019 survey of household use of banking and financial services, American Indian and Alaska Native communities had the highest rates of unbanked households at 16.3 percent.
Documentary Explores Suicide Among Native American Youth
Yahoo News, February 8
Some Tribes Are getting Help Narrowing The Digital Divide
Marketplace, February 8
In Indian Country, the proportion of households with high-speed internet access has consistently lagged behind the rest of the U.S. There has been some work to improve things, with an influx of federal funding helping some tribes build their own broadband networks.
Shunned By Retailers, Lac Du Flambeau Tribe Answers Call To Sell Local Brewery’s ‘Progressive Beer’
Native News Online, Darren Thompson, February 8
A brewing company in northern Wisconsin recently partnered with the Lac du Flambeau Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians to sell what Minocqua Brewing Company owner Kirk Bangstad calls “progressive beer.” Since the election last November, Bangstad has been crafting and selling politically-themed beer with progressive subtleties in a region that has been voting Republican for decades.
Six Indigenous Artists: ‘Bold Artistic Vision’
Indian Country Today, Joaqlin Estus, February 8
Six Indigenous artists have been awarded unrestricted $50,000 fellowships from United States Artists, a coalition of philanthropic organizations. The six are among 60 artists who received the 2021 USA Fellowships. United States Artists calls the 2021 cohort trailblazers and innovators, storytellers, culture bearers, movement builders… “[who] continue to inspire curiosity, empathy, and action toward building a more honest and just world… They help us envision new futures and show us that art-making of all kinds, and their cross-pollination, is critical to moving our culture forward.” The USA Fellowships recognize artists for both their “bold artistic vision and their contributions to the field.”