An open letter to the U.S. Congress

COVID-19 & Indian Country

43 so far! Let’s get to 50 signers!

I write in support of the Cheyenne River Sioux and Oglala Sioux tribes as well as any other Native peoples enacting checkpoints and other public health initiatives to protect their communities from the COVID-19 pandemic. Overreaching outside interference with these sovereign Native governments' pandemic mitigation measures threatens the lives and safety of tribal members, and that is completely unacceptable. We know that COVID-19 exploits and exacerbates the racial and socioeconomic disparities that shame our nation; we cannot just stand by and watch as injustice and SARS-CoV-2 work in tandem to continue the genocide begun in 1492. Congress must: · Support in every way possible Native tribes' life-saving nonpharmaceutical interventions, including checkpoints without regard for the opinions of bad neighbors like South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem. · Be responsive to the voices and stated needs of Indian Country; fast track all necessary funds and supplies to IHS and tribal governments. · Pass the COVID-19 Emergency Manufacturing Act as it is written without amendment, riders, or delay to ensure mass production of Personal Protective Equipment, test materials, and (eventually) vaccines. · Ensure that we are correctly tracking and transparently conveying COVID-19 transmission and number of cases, hospitalizations, and deaths across the country. I stand with Indian Country, and I expect you to do the same. Shut down any and all vile threats to Native American sovereignty and Native American lives, and accelerate all necessary aid!

First sent on May 21, 2020 by Olivia

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