Elders sign a proclamation for indigenous rights, closing the fourth annual Unity Concert to support the Black Hills Initiative in South Dakota. Photo by Talli Nauman
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Native Sun News Today: Proclamation calls for action on Black Hills land claim

Time expires on Black Hills payment to tribes: Legislation needed

Indigenous rights leaders proclaim: U.N. declaration guides sacred land security
By Talli Nauman
Native Sun News Today
Health & Environment Editor

PIEDMONT ––The Sept 10 signing here of an elders’ proclamation for indigenous rights culminated the fourth annual Unity Concert to support the Black Hills Initiative.

“By this proclamation we agree to share wisdom and build alliances to ensure the implementation of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) within our communities and members states,” the document affirms.

Black Hills Initiative member and former Oglala Sioux Tribal President Theresa Two Bulls hailed the signing as an accomplishment of negotiations held each year at the event to raise awareness about repatriation of the Black Hills to the Pte Oyate (Great Sioux Nation) in accord with the 1868 Ft. Laramie Treaty.

“We finally got a document,” Two Bulls pronounced. “Every year we had the right people there and we didn’t force it down anybody’s throat,” she told the Native Sun News Today. “This year we got a proclamation. It’s not to harm anybody. It’s to help everybody,” she said.

The proclamation holds: “All governments need to honor and live up to their responsibilities regarding recognized treaties and agreements, and be held accountable if they fail to do so.”

Two Bulls sees it as a “tool” encouraging elders to share their knowledge with up-and-coming generations about “what the Black Hills means.” For too long, the elders have been oppressed and holding back, she said. “The Black Hills are sacred.”

Education about that can unite adults and youth in finding innovative remedies to redress the treaty violations in Lakota Territory, she hopes.

The proclamation now will go to indigenous leadership worldwide to forge a united front promoting national government implementation of UNDRIP, not only to protect the Black Hills, but also sacred sites around the globe, according to Yvette Running Horse Collin, executive director of the Sacred Healing Circle and administrator for the Black Hills Sioux Nation Council of Elders.

To read the rest of the story visit the Native Sun News Today website: Time expires on Black Hills payment to tribes: Legislation needed

(Contact Talli Nauman at talli.nauman@gmail.com)

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