August 2020

Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Navajo Nation extends state of emergency until June 7, now with 103 deaths from coronavirus


On International Nurses Day, Navajo nurses are celebrated. Photo Navajo President's Office.
The Navajo President's Office distributed food, water, donated pet food, and other essential items to 325 Navajo families in the communities of Klagetoh, Wide Ruins, Pine Springs, and Tsé si áni on Tuesday.



 Navajo Nation extends state of emergency until June 7, now with 103 deaths from coronavirus

Article by Brenda Norrell
Photos by Navajo President's Office
Censored News
May 13, 2020


Navajo Nation: 41 new cases of COVID-19 and one more death reported as Navajo Nation extends declaration of state of emergency

WINDOW ROCK, Ariz. –  The Navajo Nation extended its state of emergency until June 7. On Tuesday, there were 41 new cases and another death from COVID-19. There have been 103 deaths, and there are now 3,245 cases of coronavirus.

On Tuesday, Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez said the Navajo Nation’s declaration of a state of emergency and the closure of Navajo Nation government offices will continue until June 7, to minimize the spread of COVID-19. The current declaration was set to expire on May 17.




The Navajo President's Office distributed food, water, donated pet food, and other essential items to 325 Navajo families in the communities of Klagetoh, Wide Ruins, Pine Springs, and Tsé si áni on Tuesday. Overall, the team has distributed essential items to over 5,000 families so far.

The Associated Press reports that the coronavirus spread began in Chilchinbeto on the Navajo Nation after a man attended a basketball tournament in Tucson and returned to the area.  It was brought from Tucson, according to doctors, the article says.

The virus then spread from this man through the Nazarene Church gathering and killed a dozen people in Chilchinbeto. It continued to spread and claim lives in Navajo Mountain, Kayenta, Tuba City and throughout the Navajo Nation.

There are 110 Navajo chapters in three states, Arizona, New Mexico and Utah, and over 350,000 Navajos.

The State of Arizona is opening up businesses despite a spike in new cases of coronavirus, with the largest numbers in the Phoenix and Tucson areas. Leaked information from the White House shows the concern over the spike in Arizona.

President Trump was in Phoenix last week to promote jobs and opening up Arizona, as the coronavirus spread. After meeting with Navajo and Gila River O'odham tribal officials, Trump admitted that his personal valet had coronavirus. Vice President Pence's press secretary, married to Trump's top aid, also has coronavirus, as well as at least 11 members of the Secret Service.

Indian Health Service shows growing numbers of coronavirus cases throughout Indian country, with large numbers in the IHS agencies of Navajo, Phoenix, Oklahoma and Billings, with growing numbers of cases in the eastern part of the United States.

Gallup, N.M., a Navajo border town, north of Zuni Pueblo, was locked down by the New Mexico Governor using the Riot Control Act from May 1 until Sunday, May 10. McKinley County, where Gallup is located had the largest number of coronavirus cases. The Pueblos in New Mexico have also been hard hit. The nursing homes in the Navajo border town of Farmington has the largest number of deaths from the virus.

The Oglala Sioux Lakota and Standing Rock Lakota Dakota both report two new cases of coronavirus. Pine Ridge is now under 72-hour lockdown. Oglala Lakota and Cheyenne River Lakota in South Dakota have maintained border checkpoints to keep outsiders from bringing in the virus. Gov. Kristi Noem threatened legal action if Lakotas didn't take down their road checkpoints. Cheyenne River Chairman Harold Frazier said the checkpoints are not coming down.

“The state of Arizona and others are reopening restaurants and other businesses, but here on the Navajo Nation the time isn’t right to do so. Based on the advice of our health care experts and the data, we will continue to take precautions until we see a consistent downward trend in the number of COVID-19 cases. The food we are distributing is intended to help families stay home and stay safe. If you received food and water then you should not be traveling to shop for food and putting yourself and others at risk. The fight against COVID-19 continues and we’re not backing down,” said President Nez.

“Today is International Nurses Day and we cannot thank them enough for everything they are doing. We have so many EMT’s, law enforcement officers, doctors, and others who are on the frontlines fighting to save lives, so let’s help them by staying home as much as possible. They are truly our heroes and they are the answers to our prayers,” said Vice President Lizer.

The 3,245 confirmed positive cases on the Navajo Nation include the following counties: McKinley County, NM: 867; Apache County, Ariz.: 846; Navajo County, Ariz.: 677; Coconino County, Ariz.: 332; San Juan County, NM: 377; San Juan County, Utah, 55; Socorro County, NM: 26; Cibola County, NM: 36; Bernalillo County: 3; Sandoval County, NM: 26

Below: Indian Health Service agencies coronavirus cases report May 10, 2020


No comments: