Jason Small: Northern Cheyenne Tribe must develop resources

The flag of the Northern Cheyenne Tribe. Photo from Facebook

Jason Small, a member of the Northern Cheyenne Tribe of Montana, argues for energy development on the reservation:
The Northern Cheyenne Tribe has stagnated since the early 1980s at which point there was the potential in the future for energy development and the promise of prosperity, but alas there has never been a progressive movement towards development.

Fast-forward 30 years and still nothing has changed; there are still a large number of Cheyenne people living in poverty and facing the same social issues which have plagued reservation occupants since the inception of the reservation system.

Today we advocate for the sound development of our resources. We know that with development comes jobs, businesses, infrastructure improvement, and the promise of a future. In turn these things help create better school environments for children and give returning college graduates the ability to utilize their educations at home instead of having to move away from their families and abandon their culture in search of better opportunities.

The only major employers on the reservation are either tribally affiliated, federally affiliated, employed by local contractors, or ranchers. The rest of the people who normally hold jobs are forced to move away completely in search of a better life or to commute long distances to places such as Crow Agency, Hardin, and Colstrip to the mines or power plant.

Get the Story:
Jason Small: Tribe should have right to develop its energy resources (The Montana Standard 3/10)

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