Native America

New Mexico and Ohkay Owingeh governors sign Indian Water Rights Settlement

BY: - September 5, 2023

Ohkay Owingeh and the state engineer will next bring the settlement to the state’s congressional delegation to advocate for the Rio Chama to be federally approved and funded. (Photo courtesy BLM)

Attorney general to investigate school discipline at Gallup McKinley County Schools

BY: - August 31, 2023

New Mexico Attorney General Raúl Torrez is opening an investigation into disproportionately harsh punishment of Native American children by Gallup McKinley County Schools. New Mexico In Depth and ProPublica reported in December that Native students are expelled from New Mexico public schools at a much higher rate than other children, and that Gallup McKinley, with the largest […]

Three years after landmark ruling, Congress silent on tribal jurisdiction in Oklahoma 

BY: - August 31, 2023

After a 2020 U.S. Supreme Court ruling defined much of Eastern Oklahoma as a Native American reservation, limiting state jurisdiction over tribal citizens, Congress has taken little interest in addressing the issues the tribes and state officials say the court decision has raised. The 5-4 decision in McGirt v. Oklahoma held that lands the federal […]

Oklahoma law to tackle missing, murdered Indigenous crisis remains unfunded

BY: - August 30, 2023

OKLAHOMA CITY — Two years after Oklahoma lawmakers passed bipartisan legislation to address the crisis of missing and murdered Indigenous people, a state law enforcement entity has not secured federal funding to carry out the new law. The Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation, in following the law, has appointed an agent to tackle these cases. […]

Indigenous women navigate abortion access hurdles post-Roe

BY: and - August 29, 2023

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Rachael Lorenzo calls it their “auntie laugh,” a powerful chuckle that lasts long and fills any space. Aunties are prominent figures in Indigenous culture who offer comfort when one needs help. Aunties answer the phone when no one else does. That’s what Lorenzo, who is Mescalero Apache, Laguna and Xicana, does as founder […]

A package of Suboxone (Photo by Spencer Platt / Getty Images)

Santa Fe center to boost opioid treatment options in McKinley County

BY: - August 24, 2023

Access to medication-assisted treatment (MAT) for opioid addiction is limited in New Mexico, but particularly in rural communities. The Santa Fe Recovery Center is hoping to change that in northwest New Mexico’s McKinley County with the help of a sizable federal grant. The center is poised to receive $1 million dollars annually for the next three […]

Judge grants delay in rule-making on federal recognition re-petitions

BY: - August 24, 2023

D.C. District Judge Amy German Jackson has given the Department of Interior another two months to submit a new rule on federal recognition of tribes. Department regulations ban tribes from re-applying for federal recognition if they were once denied. In July Jackson had ordered the department to take the next step in the rule-making process by Aug. […]

Growing number of NM schools pursue restorative justice to keep kids in schools

BY: - August 21, 2023

On a brisk February morning with snow on the ground, children arrived at Tsé Bit A’í Middle School in Shiprock, on the Navajo Nation in northwestern New Mexico. Word in the hallway was something was afoot: Substitute teachers were waiting in each classroom. The children’s 35 regular teachers were spotted, sitting in a large circle […]

Help for tribes to electrify homes available through new grant program

BY: - August 21, 2023

Thousands of homes across Indian Country are still not connected to electricity, including an estimated more than 14,000 on the Navajo Nation alone. That accounts for more than 80% of the tribal homes in the United States that aren’t electrified. But it could all change with the launch of the Tribal Electrification Program by the […]

FEMA’s disaster relief fund is running low on cash. What happens now?

BY: - August 21, 2023

WASHINGTON — The Federal Emergency Management Agency’s disaster relief fund is in desperate need of cash, with the agency projecting at least a $4 billion deficit in the weeks ahead — even as the government responds to devastating fires in Hawaii and hurricane season continues. FEMA, however, won’t simply stop the response and recovery activities […]

What one school’s fight to eliminate PFAS says about Indian Country’s forever chemical problem

BY: - August 17, 2023

Laurie Harper, director of education for the Bug-O-Nay-Ge-Shig School, a K-12 tribal school on the Leech Lake Band Indian Reservation in north-central Minnesota, never thought that a class of chemicals called per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, or PFAS, would be an issue for her community. That’s partly because, up until a few months ago, she didn’t […]

Minnesota implements new Native American history requirement for K-12 teachers

BY: - August 15, 2023

Minnesota teachers renewing their license must now undergo training about Native American history and culture. The Legislature passed a law this year requiring training for K-12 teachers about the “cultural heritage and contemporary contributions of American Indians, with particular emphasis on Minnesota Tribal Nations,” in order to renew their license. The requirement goes into effect […]