Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights

August 29, 2020

Phoenix nurse counter-protesters donate generously to Navajo and Hopi Families COVID-19 Relief

Arizona Nurses Stand in Solidarity with Navajo and Hopi Neighbors in Pandemic

By Cassandra Begay
Navajo and Hopi Families COVID-19 Relief
Censored News
August 25, 2020

TÓ NANEESDIZÍ, DINÉTAH, (TUBA CITY, NAVAJO NATION) Yee Ha’oolníidoo is honored and moved by the generous donation of $50,000 to the Navajo & Hopi Families COVID-19 Relief Fund by four Phoenix nurse counter-protesters. These strong women nurses are everyday heroes thrust into the spotlight while simply seeking to serve their communities. Their donation represents the combined efforts of tens of thousands of Arizonans who saw these nurses stand up for vulnerable patients at the Arizona State Capitol during ill-advised “freedom” marches in support of an early state reopening in late April.

A Time of Monsters: Coronavirus spreads through schools, as Navajo Vice President joins Trump regime of genocide and terror

A Time of Monsters: Coronavirus spreads through schools, as Navajo Vice President joins Trump regime of genocide and terror

By Brenda Norrell
Censored News
French translation of Censored News by
Christine Prat Update Aug. 29, 2020

The Navajo Times reports that not one dime of the $714 million in federal CARES  Act virus relief funds, received 3 months ago by the Navajo Nation government, has been spent. It remains stalled in the tribal budget process.  On Friday, the Navajo Nation reported 500 Navajos have died from the coronavirus since March.  

A Time of Monsters: Coronavirus is spreading rapidly through schools after Trump forced schools to re-open with the threat of the loss of funding. Navajo Vice President Myron Lizer joined the Trump campaign in support of this regime of genocide and terror.

Navajo Vice President Myron Lizer expressed his support for President Donald Trump during his speech on the second night of the Republican National Convention on Tuesday. Lizer said Trump delivered the $8 billion in CARES Act relief to Indian country. 

However, Lizer did not point out that Indian country had to go to court and sue to get the CARES Act funds released, which were approved by the U.S. Congress.

August 24, 2020

Powwow at the Pipeline: Lakota Honor Missing and Murdered Indigenous Men, Women and Children

Photos courtesy Joye Braun

Pow Wow at the Pipeyard

By Cheyenne River Grassroots Collective
Censored News
August 24, 2020

BRIDGER, SD – Members of the Cheyenne River Grassroots Collective (CRGC), 2KC Media, and other grassroots individuals organized an event called “Powwow at the Pipeyard” at a Keystone XL pipeyard on Monday. The event was designed to bring awareness to the terrifying number of lives lost in direct relation to extraction industries.

Mohawk Nation News 'The Constitution of Turtle Island'


MNN. Aug. 23, 2020. 

K#4. iseh atortarho tanon asenyawenreh sarasetsen ensowakwehnienstakeh tsi non nikatsenhaien tohsa teyotson, tohsa wahkenrayentahn. ken watien tsiowatstakawah  onerahontsa akonhonwtha ayesehwatatonniaten.

August 22, 2020

In the midst of the pandemic, Native Americans relying on agriculture, fishing and gathering inspire hope

While the pandemic devastates Native American economies, those based on agriculture, fishing and gathering inspire hope

By Brenda Norrell
Censored News

The pandemic has devastated the economies of Native Americans. In the long pages of testimony on economic devastation for Native people, a few words stand out, offering a glimmer of hope for a sustainable future. Separate from the billions of dollars lost in casino revenues nationwide, there are economies based on the natural world for survival.

They are the people of the land and water, maintaining agriculture, fishing and gathering.

StrongHearts Native Helpline -- Mental Health Effects of Historical Trauma

Mental Health Effects of Historical Trauma

StrongHearts Native Helpline 
Censored News

The outbreak of coronavirus earlier this year left many mental health professionals concerned that stay-at-home orders and other safety measures designed to protect citizens from the pandemic could cause an increase in mental health issues. Unfortunately, mental health disorders and access to mental health care has been an ongoing struggle for Native Americans. With the additional mental drain resulting from the virus’ spread, it’s important now more than ever to support our relatives by understanding mental health and how it disproportionately impacts our communities.

August 21, 2020

Native Americans delivering innovative relief with CARES Act funds

Mashpee food pantry tasting party.

Native American Nations are providing direct financial aid to members under federal CARES Act 

By Brenda Norrell
Censored News
Updated Aug. 21, 2020

The coronavirus pandemic in Indian country is resulting in severe hardships across the country, from food insecurity to the pressing need for laptops for distance learning.

Many Native American Nations are providing direct financial relief to members with federal CARES Act funding, from the Nooksack, Mashpee Wampanoag, Red Lake Ojibwe, and  Lac Courte Ojibwe to the Choctaw, Quapaw, Wichita, Citizen Potawatomi, Cherokee, Winnebego, Pyramid Lake Paiute, Sagway, Yurok and Zuni Pueblo.

August 20, 2020

California: Migrant hunger strikes in jails as COVID-19 and fires rage

As California fires rage, undocumented immigrants hold indefinite hunger strike and solidarity action at two separate ICE detention facilities as COVID-19 outbreak ravages majority of detainees

Immigrants launch indefinite hunger strike at Yuba County Jail condemning deplorable conditions while more than half of those detained at Mesa Verde Detention Facility are currently infected with COVID-19  following previous labor strikes and hunger strikes

Press statement 

CALIFORNIA — Despite worsening air quality due to regional fires, detained undocumented immigrants at the Yuba County Jail began an indefinite hunger strike this Wednesday morning in response to deplorable conditions at the facility.

Wildfires spreading through Native American lands in California

Photo courtesy Dee Dee Manzanares Ybarra, Rumsen. Dee Dee Manzanares Ybarra said late Wednesday, "Our Rumšen Ohlone ancestral territory is burning. Prayers please."

Photo courtesy Dee Dee Manzanares Ybarra, Rumsen

Photo courtesy Dee Dee Manzanares Ybarra, Rumsen

The Grindstone Indian Rancheria Community
north of Sacramento was evacuated on Wednesday.

In breaking news today, Thursday at dawn, The New York Times reports that wildfires raging in Northern California are doubling in size.

Wildfires tore through Northern California on Wednesday, spreading rapidly and engulfing dozens of homes as firefighters battled to stop the blazes, which have forced thousands of evacuations and were caused by an extraordinary number of lightning strikes in recent days.

A group of fires west of Sacramento, known as the L.N.U. Lightning Complex, doubled in size throughout the day, growing to 124,000 acres and threatening about 25,000 structures after forcing evacuations in Vacaville, Cal Fire officials said.

Four civilians have been injured and 175 structures have been destroyed or damaged by those fires, which are 0 percent contained as strong winds enter the area. Much of Napa, Sonoma and Solano Counties was blanketed in smoke during the day.

About 11,000 lightning strikes — a “historic lightning siege” — caused more than 367 new fires in recent days, Chief Jeremy Rahn, a Cal Fire spokesman, said at a news conference.

Gov. Gavin Newsom said that 23 fires were considered major blazes. At least one person has died, a helicopter pilot who crashed while attempting to drop water in Fresno County.

Read more:

August 18, 2020

Lakotas shut down Keystone XL pipeline man camp work for the day

Man camps bring violence against women

Keystone XL work near Cheyenne River Lakota Nation shut down for the day

'Within the first five minutes, we had a threat from a local to shoot down our drone and we had several other locals make threats and even had a gun pointed at us from a tractor.' -- Candi Brings Plenty

By Candi Brings Plenty
ACLU Indigenous Justice Organizer, South Dakota
Censored News

PHILIP, South Dakota -- Today, we held our ground for five hours and sent home the Man Camp workers and shut down work for the day. When there is resource extraction from our sacred lands, the Indigenous Womxn in those lands are directly impacted.

Man Camps especially this particular one, is only half an hour from the tribal border and only took me an hour and a half to get there from Rapid City. They will be taking advantage of our young womxn with drugs, alcohol and sex trafficking. We will all feel the impact, especially the families of those these men will prey on.

As a mother, auntie, sister, and unći, as long as I can make a stance and offer my energy, support and prayer to continue elevating our voices with the intent to protect our sacred womxn and Two Spirits from Man Camps, I will continue to show up.

Within the first five minutes, we had a threat from a local to shoot down our drone and we had several other locals make threats and even had a gun pointed at us from a tractor. I learned today that locals have no clue what is in store and that we need to educate them and help them understand the guaranteed irreversible destruction these man camps will cause, for not only the wellbeing of our environment and sacred water but also to our communities.

This is just one of many Man Camps that will be constructed alongside the Keystone Pipeline. The surrounding tribal nations, rural bar towns and even Rapid City will be impacted.

Please educate your daughters, sisters, sons and all your loved ones what human trafficking is and how to create an emergency plan of communication if your loved ones finds themselves in a harmful situation.

Not all rapes, murders and sex trafficking will happen at these sites, but also in our local communities! Man Camps are associated with pipelines and will bring in sex offenders and violent criminals who can’t get jobs anywhere else. We have witnessed what these man camps brought during the Bakken Shale man camps in North Dakota during the Dakota Access Pipeline: 243 rapes in one year in a very rural land base, with only a few man camps, the KXL Pipeline initially proposed eleven Man Camps from Montana through South Dakota and Nebraska.

Today, I was invited by the Cheyenne River Grassroots Collective to support this action with these youthful grassroots activists. My intent was to train them on best practices for legal observing, but fortunately, the four local sheriffs units and three highway patrol kept their distance. They even stated they didn’t support the Man Camps.

It was great to witness these frontline warriors citing their constitutional rights and stating verbally that they know their civil liberties and their rights to protest. This is also why those officers kept their distance.

I love my Water Protector siblings, they inspire me every time I am honored to take my stance next to them.
#NoManCamps #NoMoreMMIW
#NoKXL #WeAreNotARiot

Wet’suwet’en cabin destroyed by arsonists

Wet’suwet’en Cabin Destroyed By Arsonists

Wet'suwet'en Access Point on Gidimt'en Territory
Censored News
August 17, 2020

HOUSTON, BC -- On Saturday August 15 2020, a cabin belonging to Chief Gisday’wa was burned to the ground by unknown arsonists. The arson took place two days after the Houston Today newspaper ran a front-page story which included photographs of Gisday’wa’s cabin site, and falsely claimed that his structures had been “left behind” with “no apparent recent use.”

“This just reminds me of the first time that white people came. They kicked our families out of their territory and then they burnt all their huts and everything else, and put them on their so-called reserves. This is what this reminds me of,” stated Fred Tom, Chief Gisday’wa of the Gidimt’en Clan.

Women for Forests and Future Generations: Defending Communities from Pandemics and Climate Chaos -- WECAN webinar

Dear Community,
Please be invited to join the Women's Earth and Climate Action Network (WECAN) on Thursday, August 27 for our upcoming dialogue, "Women for Forests and Future Generations: Defending Communities from Pandemics and Climate Chaos". This session is part of our ongoing WECAN Advocacy and Solutions Series, "A Just and Healthy World is Possible".

August 17, 2020

Ofelia Rivas, O'odham Voice Against the Wall: Message of thanks

Photo courtesy Ofelia Rivas

By Ofelia Rivas
Censored News

Many Mother Earth offerings of good thoughts and deep appreciation to all that donated to my car repair.

Unfortunately we were unable to make a food delivery for our relatives in southern O'odham lands.

The general funds donated are depleted to continue our grassroots efforts. We are not a nonprofit organization and we do not benefit from any virus mutual aid fund.

All our efforts for the many years of our works has always been donations from our supporters and friends.

We sent this message of good health and united consciousness for equality and solidarity,  Ofelia

O'odham VOICE Against the WALL

                       Photos by Ofelia Rivas

Copyright Ofelia Rivas may not be used without permission.

Lakota volunteers cook and deliver gourmet meals to those in quarantine in Rapid City

Photo by Cynthia Robinson

Lakota volunteers cooked and delivered these incredible gourmet meals for those in quarantine during August. Meals for Relatives COVID-19 Rapid City Community Response is a grassroots effort.
Photo by Laura Schad
Photo by Cynthia Robinson
Photo by Laura Schad

Photo by Cynthia Robinson

 Photo by Laura Schad

(Photo above) Rebecca Kidder said, "Many thanks to Tom Whillock for donating the beautiful meat and Lesleigh Owen for driving. We fed 14 people today. On the menu: Mesquite-smoked elk rib and venison shoulder roast with a chokecherry apple drizzle, blueberry applesauce with vanilla and honey, zucchini onion sweet potato roasted hash, truffle salted kale chips and white rice infused with thyme and pineapple sage. Felt amazing to cook."

    Photo by Zintkala Mahpiya Win Blackowl‎

Photo by Laura Schad

Photo by Laura Schad

Article by Brenda Norrell
Photos by Meals for Relatives COVID-19 Rapid City Community Response
Censored News

Mni Luzahan Tiospaye Mutual Aid effort coordinates homemade hot meals to positive COVID-19 families and relatives affected, household by household. The volunteers began cooking for 16 people and 3 households. Following all sanitary guidelines, they provide medicine, encouragement and stress relief as well as aid packages. They are responding to the special needs of people coping with COVID-19 infection and exposure. The aid packages include masks and cleaning supplies.

Natalie Stites Means, Lakota organizer, said, "We serve COVID-19 positive families committed to quarantine, especially to the families whose matriarchs are sick and cannot cook for their families for 14 days. While need is not necessary for aid, we ask that people who can physically cook for themselves do so and we will assist with groceries." More on Facebook at:

Donate to Meals for Relatives COVID-19 Rapid City Community Response

August 15, 2020

Lawsuit filed for information on substandard masks IHS purchased from former White House chief of staff

Indian Health Service purchased 1 million substandard surgical masks from a former White House chief of staff, and now won't respond to a freedom of information request

By Brenda Norrell
Censored News

A lawsuit has been filed to obtain the records related to the substandard surgical masks that were purchased by Indian Health Service from a former White House chief of staff.

Indian Health Service failed to respond to a Freedom of Information request for records from Judicial Watch, which has now filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services for the records.

August 13, 2020

US Supreme Court upholds jurisdiction to protect Native women

US Supreme Court upholds jurisdiction to protect Native women

StrongHearts Native Helpline Staff
Censored News

Legal experts are calling McGirt v. Oklahoma (McGirt) the most significant Federal Indian Law case of the century. On July 9, the Supreme Court’s McGirt decision upheld the treaty affirmed reservation borders of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation.

The ruling upended previously held legal opinions that jurisdiction over major crimes transferred from federal courts to state courts. Further, that jurisdiction in fact belongs to a federal or tribal court. 

August 10, 2020

Mohawk Nation News 'The Time of the Black Serpent is Now!'

Mohawk Nation News
August 8, 2020
This rotinoshonni [iroquois] story was told at the POUNDMAKER INDIGENOUS PERFORMANCE FESTIVAL in Saskatchewan on August 6, 2020. THE VIDEO:

August 7, 2020

Navajos desperate for food and water. Navajo Council wants $24 million of virus relief funds for casinos.

Navajos desperate for water are finding water tanks and windmills broken. Photo Laurel Morales/KJZZ

Navajos desperate for food and water. Navajo Council wants $24 million of virus relief funds for casinos.

By Brenda Norrell
Censored News
French translation Christine Prat

Update: The Navajo government approved $24 million from its federal relief funds for casinos in August. There is no uniform delivery of food and water to Navajos in quarantine. There is no visiting health care for the sick and dying sent home by hospitals to quarantine. The Navajo government received $714 million in federal CARES Act virus relief funds three months ago and the most desperate are not receiving help.

Navajos are desperate for water and food, reports a Navajo journalist. Meanwhile, $650 million in federal coronavirus relief funds are delayed in the tribal government appropriation process. The Navajo Nation Council wants $24 million from the virus relief funds for casinos.

It is now the sixth month of the pandemic on the Navajo Nation and there is no plan in place to deliver emergency food and water to those sick with the virus and in quarantine at home.

August 6, 2020

Navajo and Hopi volunteers never give up as the sixth month of the pandemic approaches

Mercury Bitsuie, joined by his Uncle Andy Dann was in Sanders, Arizona, delivering relief to his community. "Delivering food and supplies in my community today. Have a wonderful day," Mercury said, after getting his vehicle running again and back on the road. Mercury and Uncle Andy Dann are among the Dine' volunteers raising their own funds and delivering to their families, relatives and communities.

August 5, 2020

'Red Nation Rising: From Bordertown Violence to Native Liberation' new book documents racism and violence in bordertowns and birth of The Red Nation

'Red Nation Rising: From Bordertown Violence to Native Liberation' new book documents racism and violence in bordertowns and birth of The Red Nation

By Melanie Yazzie

Censored News

Super thrilled to announce my first book, co-authored with Nick Estes, Jennifer Denetdale, and David Correia, with a brilliant and fierce foreword by Brandon Benallie and Radmilla Cody.

August 4, 2020

No More Deaths medical station raided with massive show of force by Border Patrol in Arivaca, Arizona

"One volunteer was able to get a few pictures from inside camp when BORTAC and Border Patrol entered. Heavily armed agents drove straight into the humanitarian aid camp in a Bearcat tank as helicopters circled overhead. Border Patrol also brought a cameraman. He filmed the scene as agents chased and arrested people who had sought out humanitarian aid and respite from the 100-degree heat. More photos and footage exist, but phones are still in custody." -- No More Deaths

"Disturbing photos show the aftermath of the raid at Byrd Camp. Last night Border Patrol and BORTAC arrested people receiving care and ransacked the humanitarian aid station, ripping apart tents and destroying medical supplies. In an attempt to suppress documentation of the military-style raid, Border Patrol seized the cell phones volunteers used to document the violence. This morning during clean up, volunteers also saw that agents had disconnected the power to the well, the only water source on the property of the remote desert camp." -- No More Deaths

The military-style raid comes after No More Deaths sought information on the US Border Patrol's swat team BORTAC, which was also just involved in attacking protesters in Portland. In Arivaca, over 30 people were detained who were receiving aid, as the temperatures soared to over 100 degrees.

No More Deaths
August 1, 2020
Update August 4, 2020

ARIVACA, Arizona -- The U.S. Border Patrol raided No More Deaths' humanitarian aid station, detaining over thirty people who were receiving medical care, food, water, and shelter from the 100 plus degree heat. In a massive show of force, Border Patrol, along with the Border Patrol Tactical Unit (BORTAC) - also recently deployed in Portland, Oregon - descended on the camp with an armored vehicle, three ATVS, two helicopters, and dozens of marked and unmarked vehicles. 

August 3, 2020

RAPID CITY: Heavily-armed SWAT team ready to shoot 14-year-old Lakota who was not home

A massive SWAT team outside a residential home in Rapid City, South Dakota, was positioned for six hours on Sunday night, prepared to deliver deadly force. Police were searching for a 14-year-old Lakota boy who was wanted for questioning in connection with a shooting. The boy was not home.

By Jean Roach, Lakota
Censored News

Wow the Rapid City Police Department, Sheriff's Department, SWAT Team, Special Response Team, Highway Patrol brought their Bearcat and accessories including a robot tank, LRAD and no masks. The 14-Year-old Lakota Boy who was not home!
How much manpower do they need?
There were no non-lethal weapons!
They all carried assault weapons ready to kill this youngster!
They should make sure where their info came from but they were fishing for six hours!
Now, where's your next manhunt?

Update: Rapid City police admit that they didn't even know if a crime had been committed when the massive SWAT team surrounded a residential home. The teenager who was shot earlier was initially believed to be the victim of suicide.
Now police say the 14-year-old being sought may have only witnessed a shooting.
In any case, the massive heavily-armed SWAT team really did not if the youth was involved or if a crime had been committed.