Saturday, December 14, 2019

Protect ICWA Campaign Applauds Legal Filing by Large Coalition of Tribal Nations and Native Organizations Defending the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA)

By Native News Online Staff - December 14, 2019 at 11:02PM

Published December 15, 2019

PORTLAND, Ore. — On Friday, 486 federally recognized American Indian and Alaska Native Tribes and 59 Native organizations filed an amicus brief to the Fifth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals defending the constitutionality of the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) as part of the Court’s en banc proceedings.

The Protect ICWA Campaign strongly supports this effort to defend ICWA, which was joined by 26 States and 77 members of Congress, and other partners who know how critical ICWA is in achieving the best interest of Indian children and families in state child welfare proceedings.

The briefs were filed in Brackeen v. Bernhardt, the federal lawsuit in which three states and a handful of individual plaintiffs have challenged the constitutionality of ICWA. Earlier this year, a three-judge panel of the Fifth Circuit affirmed that ICWA is constitutional. However, following a recent order by the Fifth Circuit, the full en banc court is currently considering this case with oral arguments scheduled in late January 2020.

“We’re pleased, once again, at the overwhelming expression of support for the Indian Child Welfare Act,” said Sarah Kastelic, Executive Director of the National Indian Child Welfare Association. “It’s no surprise that tribal governments, states, members of Congress, and  child welfare experts alike support important protections of ICWA that ensure considerations necessary to determine the best interest of each Indian child.”

“The National Congress of American Indians, the oldest and largest organization made up of tribal nations, stands alongside Native children and families today, to educate the Fifth Circuit about the critical protections the Indian Child Welfare Act provides to our communities and the importance of honoring tribal authority to make determinations concerning our Indian children and our Indian families,” said Kevin J. Allis, Chief Executive Officer of the National Congress of American Indians.

“The overwhelming support from Indian Country, states, child welfare organizations, and others is evidence of how ICWA works to protect the Indian child and family, as the gold standard in child welfare,” said Shannon Keller O’Loughlin, Executive Director and Attorney for the Association on American Indian Affairs. “The interests that seek to overturn ICWA are those interests that make money in the adoption industry. We will continue to fight to protect our children and give them every opportunity to live healthy and strong.”

“I am happy but not surprised by the number of signatories that joined on this brief—Indian country stands as one in support of the Indian Child Welfare Act,” said John Echohawk, Executive Director of the Native American Rights Fund. “Support for ICWA is strong and consistent across tribes as well as organizations and individuals who work on child welfare issues. It is known as an essential protection that promotes our children’s well-being. Well-being that historically has been neglected and ignored.”

Read the full amicus brief here:

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Chickasaw Artist Experiments with Ancient Dyeing Technique

By Chickasaw Nation Media - December 14, 2019 at 11:00PM

Rena Smith dons a silk noil cape dyed with cochineal beetle remains, with black piping and ancient Chickasaw symbols during the 2019 Southeastern Art Show and Market in Tishomingo, Oklahoma.

Published December 15, 2019

TISHOMINGO, Okla. — Rena Smith has been making pucker toe moccasins for years but recently became interested in dyeing fabric with cochineal – a beetle from Central and South America whose crushed carcasses produce a reddish color.

It’s been used for centuries as a dye and it is believed early Chickasaws used it to dye or embellish fabric with ancient symbols sacred to the tribe.

Smith’s first foray into using beetles as dye came a few years ago on a silk noil cape. The raw fabric is slightly nubby with random flecks in a natural, off-white color. It has a somewhat rough texture but with a gentle drape.

The Chickasaw artist and craftswoman who hails from Scappoose, Oregon, a town of approximately 7,000 just north of Portland, decided the cape was “too rough,” and after repeated hand-washings, she achieved the desired texture. The washings made the garment smoother overall, but allowed for natural “pilling” indicative of silk noil.

“The bug carcasses were used to dye the British Army red coats during the Revolutionary War,” Smith said. “It is unlike natural dyes. I worked the cochineal until I had a color I liked. I didn’t want to ruin the color I had. I would have experimented further, but I liked the magenta hue and decided to use it,” she added.

Dyeing the garment took an entire day. She added black piping to the borders, ironed the garment and finished the edges. Then, she started applying hand-painted Southeastern Native American symbols on it. “I know ancient Chickasaw men wore capes and it stands to reason women did as well,” Smith said while manning a booth at the 2019 Southeastern Art Show and Market (SEASAM).

She may reside in Oregon, but Smith is an annual fixture at the Artesian Arts Festival and SEASAM, and provides pucker toe moccasins to the Chickasaw Nation for display at several sites illustrating tribal culture.

In Oregon, she shows schoolchildren the Chickasaw tradition of making cornhusk dolls and explains the tribe’s ancient tradition of wearing pucker toe footwear, ideal for woodland tribes traveling, hunting and gathering on the forest floor.

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Second Native American Presidential Forum to be Held in Las Vegas on January 14 – 15, 2020

By Levi Rickert - December 14, 2019 at 11:00PM

-The Frank LaMere Native American Presidential Forum – August 19 & 20, 2019. Photo by Brian Pavlich


Published December 15, 2019

7 Generations, 7 States and 77 Electoral votes – Indian Country United

LAS VEGAS — The second Native American Presidential Forum is scheduled to be held on January 14 – 15, 2020 in Las Vegas, Nevada. The forum will consist of invited 2020 presidential candidates sitting with panels consisting of tribal leaders, organizations, elders and youth throughout Indian Country with an emphasis on the seven key battleground states of Arizona, Colorado, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, North Carolina and Wisconsin.

The venue will be the University of Nevada Las Vegas, at the Artemus W. Ham Concert Hall – a venue which seats 1,832. There will be free General Admission at the door with priority given to tribal members.

The Four Directions and Nevada Tribes Native American Presidential Forum 2020 will showcase the political power of Indian Country united.

“We must not wait for political parties to organize our Nations and/or our people – we must depend upon ourselves, our Nations, Organizations and our People to make a positive change. We as Nations united and our friends can change this Nation, OUR NATION in 2020. 7 Generation, 7 States and 77 Electoral Votes,” the organizers of the forum said in news release.

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Thirteen Native Students Receive Scholarships from Shakopee Mdewakanton Tribe, University of Minnesota

By Native News Online Staff - December 14, 2019 at 11:00PM

Published December 15, 2019

PRIOR LAKE, Minn. — The Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community (SMSC) and the University of Minnesota today announced the newest class of scholarship recipients for the SMSC Endowed Scholarship program. They include 13 Native American students from 11 different tribes.

The new scholars represent:

  • Ten undergraduate students and three graduate students
  • Seven students at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities campus, four at the Morris campus and two at the Duluth campus
  • Tribes across the West and Midwest, including tribal nations in Minnesota, Kansas, Montana, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Wisconsin and Wyoming

The SMSC Endowed Scholarship program was established through a $2.5 million gift to the University of Minnesota from the SMSC. The SMSC donated an additional $500,000 to the scholarship program in 2017. This funding leveraged a former university matching program, doubling the impact of the gift to students. Since the program began in 2009, more than 200 students have received this scholarship. This year 44 scholarship recipients are enrolled, representing more than 32 tribal nations across the United States.

I am pursuing a Masters of Education in youth development leadership with the goals of developing the leadership potential of Native youth and furthering the success of my community,” said Caitlin Bordeaux, a scholarship recipient and member of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe. “This funding support will allow me to focus on the work I need to achieve my goals by removing some of the financial stress of education.”

The new 2019-2020 SMSC Endowed Scholarship recipients include:

  • Sunny Boado, Kickapoo Tribe (KS)
  • Caitlin Bordeaux, Rosebud Sioux Tribe (SD)
  • Clayton Carlson, Red Cliff Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians (WI)
  • Nathaniel Fast Wolf, Seminole Nation of Oklahoma (OK)
  • Joseph Gokee, Bad River Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians (WI)
  • Lindsay Johnson, Bois Forte Band of Chippewa (MN)
  • Lester Merrill, St. Croix Chippewa Indians of Wisconsin (WI)
  • Lisa Skjefte, Little Earth of United Tribes (MN)
  • Derek Walking Eagle, Rosebud Sioux Tribe (SD)
  • Sydney Wallowingbull, Northern Cheyenne Tribe (MT) and Northern Arapaho Tribe (WY)
  • Angelia White, Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate of the Lake Traverse Reservation (SD)
  • Andrea Wiglesworth, Seneca-Cayuga Nation (OK)
  • Dylan Young, Rosebud Sioux Tribe (SD)

The university’s Office for Equity and Diversity administers the scholarship. Native American students who have been admitted to any University of Minnesota campus are eligible to apply for the SMSC Endowed Scholarship. Scholarship applications for the 2020-2021 academic year are due spring 2020. Visit for more details.

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3 Ways The Food Delivery Market is Changing

By Native News Online Staff - December 14, 2019 at 10:00PM

Published December 14, 2019

The business of delivering food from restaurants or grocery stores to the home is experiencing rapid transformation as new online platforms battle to capture customers and markets across various parts of the world. Online food ordering and delivery platforms are increasing convenience and choice, giving customers a means to order from a broad variety of restaurants and food vendors with just one tap of their smartphones. That being said, one area that is definitely transforming how people order food items is the food delivery app market. Companies are always coming up with new ways to improve their customer service or market their food ordering apps. Here is a list of some of the ways the food delivery market is changing with the help of technology.

Big Data

Online grocery delivery apps are increasingly using big data to increase their growth. In particular, they are using big data to help them gain better insights into customer preferences and behaviors and create a more engaging user experience. Food delivery giants like Mercato are using artificial intelligence to ensure that customers, restaurants, and riders have a great experience when using their platform. They are using big data to gain a better understanding of customer and market trends, as well as make more meaningful data-powered decisions.

New Delivery Channels

Established food ordering and delivery apps are experimenting with various ways of ensuring food packages reach their customers. Some companies are experimenting with drones to help cut the delivery time. Once these companies get the awaiting government approval, food delivery using drones is expected to be a reality rather than a dream. 

Besides drones, other companies are testing the possibility of delivering food packages using robots. The most exciting thing about this concept is that these robots don’t look anything like the menacing sci-fi movies’ robots, but they are cute. The robots are designed to prevent theft of the food packages they carry using a special feature that only allows the customers to unlock them from the food delivery application on their smartphones.

New Ordering Channels

With most people nowadays having so many smart gadgets and devices connected to the internet on their hands, they can perform a variety of amazing feats. With the advent of smart TVs, smartphones, smartwatches, and other such smart devices, it makes perfect sense to order food and other consumer goods and services using them. 

It is for this reason that companies like Mercato have developed an online platform that allows you to order anything from seasonal fruits and produce, hand-cut meats, specialty beverages, bakery and pantry items, spices and seasoning, dairy, and more from specialty and independent grocery stores of your choice. And the best part about it is that you can order through various smart devices including your PC, laptop, smartphone, smartwatch, and smart TV.

In a nutshell, the convenience of ordering goods online has generated a surge in the development of food ordering and delivery applications. Many of these platforms serve as a virtual market where customers can browse various grocery stores, independent food vendors, cafes, and restaurants and order their next meal or food package.

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4 Natural Supplements for Arthritis that are Backed by Science

By Native News Online Staff - December 14, 2019 at 10:00PM

Credit :Pixabay

Published December 14, 2019

Scientists in the health and wellness field have always struggled to keep pace with the growing popularity of health supplements. However, more natural medications and supplements are being tested in well-designed clinical trials in a bid to catch up. One particular area that has been receiving increasing attention is the management of arthritis, and research suggests that various natural supplements can help to relieve the symptoms of arthritis. Here are 4 supplements that are backed by science and found to be effective in the management of osteoarthritis (OA), rheumatoid arthritis (RA), and other symptoms that are generally associated with arthritis.


Capsaicin is an active ingredient of chili peppers and although it is an irritant for human and produces a burning sensation in the tissue that comes into contact with it, it has healing benefits when it comes to arthritis. How does it work? Capsaicin has the ability to reduce substance P, a known pain transmitter. Several studies have proven its pain relieving properties. In one study published in 2010, it was found that capsaicin has the ability to reduce joint pain by up to 50% after three weeks of use. This natural supplement is available as a topical gel, cream or patch. It is best for osteoarthritis but can also be used effectively for rheumatoid arthritis.


Turmeric contains a chemical known as curcumin which is known to have powerful anti-inflammatory properties. This chemical can reduce joint pain and swelling by inhibiting inflammatory enzymes and cytokines. A clinical trial that was performed in 2010 using a turmeric supplement found long-term improvement in function and pain in patients with knee osteoarthritis. A subsequent smaller study conducted in 2012 using a curcumin product showed more reduced joint swelling and pain in patients with rheumatoid arthritis when compared to over-the-counter painkillers. This supplement is best for OA and can also be used effectively for patients with active RA.


Several studies have shown that CBD oil, an extract of the cannabis plant that is not psychoactive, can help to ease arthritis pain and even treat arthritis. According to  cbdcentral, CBD can help prevent joint neuropathy and OA. According to the findings of the study, it was affirmed that CBD was effective in both because it reduced joint inflammation and acted as a protection to the nerves. 

Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Fish oil contains omega-3 fatty acids that have the ability to block inflammatory prostaglandins and cytokines. These fatty acids are converted into potent anti-inflammatory chemicals known as resolvins when absorbed by the body. Omega-3 fatty acids, particularly DHA and EPA, have been widely studied for rheumatoid arthritis and several other inflammatory conditions. According to a 2010 study, it was established that fish oil has the ability to significantly reduce joint stiffness and tenderness in patients with rheumatoid arthritis. Fish oil can also be used effectively for OA and other inflammatory conditions. 

It is always recommended that you consult your doctor before you try out any supplements so that you can understand the possible side effects and other interactions with any medications you may be taking. You should also try to do some research about any supplements you may be interested in and share this information with your doctor.

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Newseum's past, its future and a pair of glasses

By Mark Trahant - December 14, 2019 at 01:16PM

A history that includes all of our stories, a celebration of dissent, and the importance of journalism to a democratic society

Click to Read the Full Article: Indian Country Today