Smoke signals. (Grand Ronde, Or.) 19??-current, November 15, 2010, Page 6, Image 6

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    6 NOVEMBER 1 5, 201 0
Smoke Signals
Obama designates Native American Heritage Month
By Dean Rhodes
Smoke SignaU editor
President Barack Obama des
ignated November as National
Native American Heritage Month
on Oct. 29.
In his proclamation, Obama
"For millennia before Europeans
settled in North America, the in
digenous peoples of this continent
flourished with vibrant cultures
and were the original stewards of
the land. From generation to gen
eration, they handed down invalu
able cultural knowledge and rich
traditions, which continue to thrive
in Native American communities
across the country today. During
National Native American Heritage
Month, we
honor and cel
ebrate their
importance to
our great Na
tion and our
journey has
been marked
both by bright
times of prog
ress and dark moments of injustice
for American Indians and Alaska
Natives. Since the birth of America,
they have contributed immeasur
ably to our country and our heri
tage, distinguishing themselves as
scholars, artists, entrepreneurs and
leaders in all aspects of our society.
Barack Obama
The following Committees and Special Event Boards have vacant,
Veterans' Special Event Board 1 Vacancy
Powwow Special Event Board 1 Vacancy
Rodeo Special Event Board 1 Vacancy
Cultural Trust Board 1 Vacancy
Ceremonial Hunt Board 1 Vacancy
Social Services 2 Vacancy
Timber Committee 1 Vacancy
Please send completed applications to Dakota Whitecloud,
Tribal Council Relations Coordinator, 9615 Grand Ronde'Road,
Grand Ronde, OR 97347.
Native Americans have also served
in the United States Armed Forces
with honor and distinction, defend
ing the security of our Nation with
their lives. Yet, our Tribal commu
nities face stark realities, including
disproportionately high rates of
poverty, unemployment, crime and
disease. These disparities are unac
ceptable, and we must acknowledge
both our history and our current
challenges if we are to ensure that
all of our children have an equal
opportunity to pursue the Ameri
can dream. From upholding the
Tribal sovereignty recognized and
reaffirmed in our Constitution and
laws to strengthening our unique .
nation-to-nation relationship, my
administration stands firm in fulfill
ing our Nation's commitments.
"Over the past two years, we have
made important steps towards
working as partners with Native
Americans to build sustainable
and healthy Native communities. '
The American Recovery and Rein
vestment Act continues to impact
the lives of American Indians and
Alaska Natives, including through
the important projects to improve,
rebuild and renovate schools so our
children can get the education and
skills they will need to compete in
the global economy. At last year's
White House Tribal Nations Con
ference, I also announced a new
consultation process to improve
communication and coordination
between the federal government
. and Tribal governments.
This year, I was proud to sign
a landmark Affordable Care Act,
which permanently reauthorized
the Indian Health Care Improve
ment Act, a cornerstone of health
care for American Indians and
Alaska Natives. This vital legisla
tion will help modernize the Indian
health care system and improve
health care for 1.9 million American
Indians and Alaska Natives. To
combat the high rates of crime and
sexual violence in Native communi
ties, I signed the Tribal Law and
Order Act in July to bolster Tribal
law enforcement and enhance their
abilities to prosecute and fight crime
more effectively. And, recently, my
administration reached a settle
ment in a lawsuit brought by Native
American farmers against the U.S.
Department of Agriculture that un
derscores our commitment to treat
all our citizens fairly.
"As we celebrate the contributions
and heritage of Native Americans
during this month, we also recommit
to supporting Tribal self-determination,
security and prosperity for all
Native Americans. While we cannot
erase the scourges or broken prom
ises of our past, we will move ahead
together in writing a new, brighter
chapter in our joint history."
Obama also called upon Ameri
cans to commemorate the month
"with appropriate programs and ac
tivities, and to celebrate Nov. 26 as
Native American Heritage Day. D
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Vendors call (503) 879223
for information
Pick up an application at
Governance Building or Elders' Activity Center
42 tables available
first-come, first-serve
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Ad created by George Valdez