your internet resource on facebook on twitter on Google+ on soundcloud
phone: 202 630 8439
Health Coverage for American Indians and Alaska Natives
Advertise on Indianz.Com
Home > News > Headlines
Print   Subscribe
Highlights from Day 2 of National Congress of American Indians

Filed Under: National | Politics
More on: bia, cherokee, icwa, jurisdiction, meetings, military, ncai, oklahoma, shutdown, tloa, tribal courts, vawa, veterans

The National Congress of American Indians holds its 70th annual convention all week in Tulsa, Oklahoma, on Monday. Here are some of the highlights of the second day of the conference.

Honoring Dusten Brown
Cherokee Nation citizen Dusten Brown was forced to give up his daughter to a non-Indian couple in a highly-charged Indian Child Welfare Act dispute but the message from NCAI on Tuesday was one of hope and support.

Brown, an active duty U.S. Army soldier, was presented with a star quilt and eagle feathers for himself and his father, also a veteran, during a moving ceremony on the convention floor. Dozens of veterans came out to support their comrade, who ended his legal appeals just last Thursday.

There was also an eagle plume. It was a sign of hope -- to be given to Brown's daughter when she returns for Cherokee naming ceremony.

"Veronica will always be a Cherokee citizen, and we look forward to the day she comes home to Dusten," said Joe Crittenden, the tribe's deputy chief.

Sandy White Hawk, a veteran and member of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe, helped organize the ceremony. She was adopted as a child but later connected with her Indian family and urged everyone to keep Brown, his daughter, his family and even the non-Indian couple in their prayers.

"We need to bring a collective healing," White Hawk said.

Brown did not make any remarks at the ceremony.

More Shutdown Woes
Tribes have made significant progress with the passage of the Tribal Law and Order Act in 2010 and the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act earlier this year.

The shutdown of the federal government affects the implementation of both laws, however.. After three years of work, the Indian Law and Order Commission has completed its report on the justice system in Indian Country but tribes can't see it because it's being delayed.

"That report is final," said NCAI President Jefferson Keel, who sat on the commission that was created by the Tribal Law and Order Act. "It's being published ... and is on its way to Congress and to the president."

The tribal provisions of VAWA are fresh on the books and don't go into effect until 2015. But some key questions are going unanswered because the Bureau of Indian Affairs isn't fully operational.

The law recognizes tribal jurisdiction over non-Indians who commit domestic violence offenses against Indian partners. Tribes want to know whether they can house non-Indians in their detention facilities.

The early word from Assistant Secretary Kevin Washburn is yes, tribal leaders were told at a breakout session on Tuesday. But the shutdown has delayed an official decision on the matter.

Despite the wait, tribes across the country are examining their justice systems to determine whether they need to make changes to exercise jurisdiction over non-Indians. One concern raised was the inclusion of non-Indians in the jury pool.

"This is not something new in Indian Country. We've had jury trials, We have lawyers," said Judge Greg Bigler of the Muscogee Nation of Oklahoma.

But critics of the law will undoubtedly challenge the legality of tribal jurisdiction, he noted. "This is something that's going to put scrutiny on us," he said.

Related Stories:
Highlights from Day 1 of National Congress of American Indians (10/15)
National Congress of American Indians opens annual meeting (10/14)

Copyright © Indianz.Com
More headlines...
Stay Connected:
On Facebook

On Twitter

On Google+

On SoundCloud
Local Links:
Federal Register | Indian Gaming | Jobs & Notices | In The Hoop | Message Board
Latest News:
Native Sun News: Family questions FBI on reservation death (11/25)
Lakota Country Times: Rosebud students earn top scholarship (11/25)
Brandon Ecoffey: Making a difference for people on Pine Ridge (11/25)
Yurok Tribe: Mourning the passing of 'visionary' Troy Fletcher (11/25)
Ned Blackhawk: Supreme Court case jeopardizes tribal rights (11/25)
Steve Russell: The real origins of the world's terrorism crisis (11/25)
Ramona Peters: Sharing a Wampanoag story of Thanksgiving (11/25)
Yatibaey Evans: Let's all teach the truth about Native history (11/25)
Martie Simmons: Every Native parent dreads this time of year (11/25)
Eric Metaxas: The 'miracle' of Squanto and first Thanksgiving (11/25)
Presidential Medal of Freedom presented to late Billy Frank Jr (11/25)
Oneida Nation opens first branch location of tribal-owned bank (11/25)
Virginia tribes continue to pay tribute required by 1677 treaty (11/25)
Chukchansi Tribe reaches new agreement for shuttered casino (11/25)
Poarch Band to welcome visitors to $65M expansion at casino (11/25)
Stillaguamish Tribe debuts eatery and microbrewery at casino (11/25)
Connecticut tribes consider proposals for third gaming facilty (11/25)
Mark Pilarski: Why are games different at some tribal casinos? (11/25)
Tribes seek support for Native language instruction programs (11/24)
Rep. Mullin confirms divisions in Indian Country on Carcieri fix (11/24)
President Obama to award Medal of Freedom to Billy Frank Jr. (11/24)
Sault Tribe pushes for passage of Tribal Labor Sovereignty Act (11/24)
Lakota Country Times: Charles Trimble recognized for writings (11/24)
Native Sun News Editorial: Some new names in Indian Country (11/24)
Jim Kent: South Dakota lands in the news again for corruption (11/24)
John Yellowbird Steele: Bill tries to hijack recognition process (11/24)
Albert Bender: 'The Green Inferno' hits new low in racist films (11/24)
Peter d'Errico: Anti-Indian wars continue in US Supreme Court (11/24)
Anne Keala Kelly: US government wants to steal Hawaii again (11/24)
Counties ask Supreme Court to hear Ute Tribe boundary case (11/24)
Shinnecock Nation considers entering medical marijuana field (11/24)
USDA policy eases return of traditional food to tribal facilities (11/24)
Sitka Tribe asks FBI to consider racial bias in student's arrest (11/24)
Court sides with Indian inmates over closure of sweat lodge (11/24)
Former employee accused of cheating Grand Traverse Band (11/24)
Tribes with special acts of Congress face hurdles for gaming (11/24)
Enterprise Rancheria addresses concerns about gaming site (11/24)
Mohegan Tribe signs partner for $5B casino proposal in Korea (11/24)
Bart Hinkle: States trying to protect their gaming monopolies (11/24)
Blackfeet Nation wins ruling against development at sacred site (11/23)
Center for Native American Youth hires new executive director (11/23)
Quinault Nation slams approval of genetically modified salmon (11/23)
Native Sun News: Great Plains people key in defeating Keystone (11/23)
more headlines...

Home | Arts & Entertainment | Business | Canada | Cobell Lawsuit | Education | Environment | Federal Recognition | Federal Register | Forum | Health | Humor | Indian Gaming | Indian Trust | Jack Abramoff Scandal | Jobs & Notices | Law | National | News | Opinion | Politics | Sports | Technology | World

Indianz.Com Terms of Service | Indianz.Com Privacy Policy
About Indianz.Com | Advertise on Indianz.Com

Indianz.Com is a product of Noble Savage Media, LLC and Ho-Chunk, Inc.