This Week at First Nations: June 4, 2021

Indigenous Knowledge Sharing Continues into 2021 and 2022

Congratulations to the Next Cohort of Luce Indigenous Knowledge Fellows

In case you missed it, First Nations announced yesterday the continuation of the Luce Indigenous Knowledge Fellowship, with the selection of 13 new Fellows for the 2021 Cohort. Each Fellow was chosen for their work in their knowledge fields, as well as their contribution to this growing community. Meet the new Fellows here!

2022 Cohort Application Now Open

Also this week, First Nations opened the grant application process for the 2022 Luce Indigenous Knowledge Fellowship. In this third year of the program, First Nations will award 10 fellowships of $75,000 each to outstanding Native knowledge holders and knowledge makers engaged in meaningful work that benefits Indigenous people and communities in either reservation or urban settings.

Learn more about the Fellowship and Q&A pre-application webinars, and then start your application here. The deadline to apply is July 13, 2021.


Pandemic Relief and Recovery Available through Western COVID-19 Response Grant

In addition to First Nations’ COVID-19 Emergency Response Grants, pandemic relief and response support is being provided through the new Western COVID-19 Response Grant, made possible thanks to the May & Stanley Smith Charitable Trust. In line with the priorities of the trust, funding is being targeted to Native American applicants who are or who serve adults and transitioning youth with disabilities, elders, foster youth, and veterans and military families, and who are located in the Western United States: Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Texas, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming. Western tribes: Learn more and apply by June 24, 2021.


There’s Still Time to Provide Feedback on COVID-19 Vaccine

A few weeks ago we shared that First Nations has joined the African American Research Collaborative, National Association of Latino Elected Officials, and others in facilitating a survey to learn more about Native folks who may be hesitant to get vaccinated. Results are confidential and anonymous, and data will be used only for public health information. Your insights are still welcome! Please take the survey here.


Tune in for Capital Hill Ocean Week

Join us for Capitol Hill Ocean Week (CHOW), June 8 to 10, 2021, convened by the National Marine Sanctuary Foundation, and hear from people from around the world on how to grow a more racially equitable and just ocean and Great Lakes conservation movement. First Nations’ President and CEO Michael Roberts will be among the speakers for the plenary session, exploring the historical lack of inclusion and the failure to center justice and equity in ocean and coastal conservation and how the broader ocean and Great Lakes community can work together toward collective action and equitable outcomes in the future. CHOW is free and open to the public. Learn more.


COVID-19 Response and Recovery Grants Continue to Reach Native Communities

This week, in a 23rd round of funding, First Nations awarded grants to 16 Native nations and organizations to support ongoing response and recovery efforts, build critical services and infrastructure, invest in communications and technology, and meet overall operating costs. To date, First Nations has awarded $3,819,608.28 in 298 grants through the COVID-19 Emergency Response Fund. Thank you to everyone who has supported this fund and helped Native organizations continue serving their communities through the pandemic.


What We’re Watching: Celebrating Indigenous Women Chefs

We’re continuing to enjoy this webinar series from the Annual Conference on Native American Nutrition through the Seeds of Native Health Campaign. The latest episode starring featured chef Tawnya Brant airs next week, June 8, at 11 am Mountain. Register for this event, plus access past webinar recordings and recipes here.


Standoff Author Talks about Renegotiating the Colonial Relationship

In a conversation on American colonialism with The Guardian, Jacqueline Keeler, author of Standoff, a book about two occupations in which participants confronted federal and state authorities, shares that America is still running on Democracy 1.0 and that it’s time to rethink. “We can play whack-a-mole and go after every single pipeline project. But a structure produces these outcomes,” she says. “To change the outcomes, we need to change the structure itself.”

Photo credit The Guardian


Expectations and Hope Surround Interior Secretary Deb Haaland

“It is difficult to overstate the significance to Native people of Haaland’s role as the first Native American to lead a Cabinet agency, specifically an agency once responsible for eradicating the homes, culture and often the lives of Indigenous people. … It is also difficult to overstate the pressures and expectations Haaland faces from her people, who hope she will address 150 years of betrayal by a department officially entrusted with ensuring Native Americans’ welfare.” The New York Timesvia the Chicago Tribune, looks at the “promise and pressures” of Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland.

 Photo credit Evan Vucci/AP


Supreme Court Rules in Favor of Tribes’ Rights

Native News Online reports, the Supreme Court unanimously ruled Tuesday that tribal law enforcement can stop and search a non-Indigenous person “traveling on public rights-of-way running through a reservation for potential violations of state or federal law.” Associate Justice Stephen Breyer wrote in the court opinion, “To deny a tribal police officer authority to search and detain for a reasonable time any person he or she believes may commit or has committed a crime would make it difficult for tribes to protect themselves against ongoing threats.” 

Photo credit Native News Online


A 1973 Call for Fair Treatment of Native Americans in the Film Industry

At the 45th Annual Academy Awards in 1973, Sacheen Littlefeather made history when she spoke on behalf of Marlon Brando, saying Brando could not accept the best actor award because of the treatment of American Indians today by the film industry and on television and movie reruns, and in light of happenings at the time at Wounded Knee. The Guardian looks at Littlefeather’s historic speech and her lifetime of advocacy for Native American rights.

Photo credit The Guardian, Album/Alamy