The Mississippi commission tasked with creating a new state flag voted 8-1 to recommend a new design with a magnolia surrounded by stars to replace the previous flag, which featured the Confederate battle flag. The design will go on the November ballot – if voters accept the design, it will become the new state flag. If not, the design process will start over completely.
Following the landmark Supreme Court decision in McGirt v. Oklahoma, the Oneida Nation of Wisconsin won a legal battle at the end of July with the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals ruling that their reservation is still intact. The decision found that the non-tribal Village of Hobart, which is located within the treaty boundaries of the Oneida Nation, lacked jurisdiction to apply an ordinance to Oneida Nations on-reservation activities.
The South Dakota Native Homeownership Coalition is working to increase homeownership among Native veterans by highlighting various loan programs, strategies such as a newly developed guide to homeownership for Oglala Sioux veterans, and working with Congress to streamline programs like the Veterans Affairs’ Native American Direct Loan program.
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro is partnering with five Native tribes and two national organizations to increase access to literary resources for Native youth. The project, Reading Nation Waterfall, is based on research that shows tribal school libraries are often under-funded and can create book deserts.
The Siskiyou Daily News outlines the difficult decision that many tribal nations are facing when it comes to opening their casinos and risking further spread of COVID-19, or keeping them closed and risking “economic ruin.”
Keep reading for a full news update.
Northern Arapaho Tribe Offers Condolences For Death Of Member Due To Covid-19
Indianz.com, September 2
The Northern Arapaho Business Council mourns the passing of a Tribal Member due to COVID-19. The NABC is not naming the individual – an adult female who’d been hospitalized in Salt Lake City – out of respect for her family’s privacy. Chairman Lee Spoonhunter offered his condolences on behalf of the NABC over this tremendous loss, which is felt by the entire Northern Arapaho Tribe.
Following McGirt Decision, Oneida Nation Case Continues String Of Indigenous Court Victories
People’s World, Albert Bender, September 2
The Oneida Nation of Wisconsin won a long legal battle with the recent decision by the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals in Oneida Nation v. Village of Hobart that its reservation is still intact. The decision is the direct result of the Supreme Court ruling in McGirt v. Oklahoma, issued on July 9, declaring that the Creek Reservation in that state still exists. The legal issues in both cases are basically the same—allotment, non-Indian intrusion by a state or municipal entity on reservation land, the Indian Reorganization Act of 1934, and current reservation status.
Tribal Casinos Weigh Dueling Risks Of COVID-19, Economic Ruin
The Siskiyou Daily News, Steve Horn, September 2
As the country’s economy slowly opens back up while COVID-19 cases and deaths continue to rise, tribal gaming finds itself caught in a bind: restoring an economic pillar many tribal nations rely on or shutting down operations and losing out on that funding.
Commission Favors New Mississippi Flag That Features A Magnolia To Replace Flag Showing Confederate Emblem
AP News, Emily Pettus, September 2
Mississippi voters will decide whether to accept a new state flag with a magnolia to replace an old one legislators retired under pressure because it included the Confederate battle emblem that’s widely seen as racist. The magnolia flag has the state flower on a dark blue background with red bars on either end. The flower is encircled by stars representing Mississippi as the 20th state. It also has a single star made of diamond shapes representing the Native American people who lived on the land before others arrived.
Coalition Showcases Homeownership Models For Native Veterans On Pine Ridge Indian Reservation
Native News Online, September 2
The South Dakota Native Homeownership Coalition is working to increase homeownership among American Indian veterans. A pair of American Indian community development financial institutions (CDFIs) recently hosted a reservation-wide tour for state and federal officials to highlight housing loan programs available to Native veterans.
UNCG To Improve Literacy Among Native American Youth
WUNC, September 2
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro is partnering with Native American tribes to increase access to literary resources through a project called the Reading Nation Waterfall. It’s based on research that showed school libraries in Native American tribes are often under-funded, leading to book deserts. Five tribes will participate in the project, including North Carolina’s Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians and the Lumbee Tribe.
Native Youth Navigate Complex, Contradictory Jurisdictions
Cronkite News, Calah Schlabach, September 2
Unlike other children, Native American children can be tried and sentenced in tribal, state or federal justice systems. Once they make contact with the justice system, Native youth face unique complications that many don’t understand.
Before You Go On A Road Trip, Consider Who Lives Where You’re Going
Vogue, Elise Taylor, September 2
With international borders closed, more and more people are taking domestic trips. For tourists thinking about traveling to areas within the country that are disproportionately affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, such as areas near Native reservations, an important message needs to be stressed: Before you go on a road trip, consider who lives where you’re going—and abide by their rules.