Providing current news on Central Council of Tlingit and Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska's
government, administrative, and program activities.
Tlingit & Haida eNews 06.27.19
News in this Edition...
  • Delegation Travels to Haida Gwaii
  • Chief Justice Testifies Before Indian Affairs Committee
  • Fall 2019 Enrollment for Haa Yoo X’atángi Kúdi Lingít Language Immersion Nest
  • Save the Date: Alumni Scholarship
  • Save the Dates: Back to School Celebration & Southeast Alaska Backpack Event
Delegation Travels to Haida Gwaii
On June 10-14, 2019, a Tlingit & Haida delegation including President Richard ( Chalyee Éesh) Peterson, 1st Vice President Yodean Armour, 3rd Vice President Will Micklin, and staff visited Haida Gwaii to discuss issues of common interest and continue to reestablish relations. President Peterson and fellow Executive Council members met with the traditional and contemporary governing bodies that represent the people of Haida Gwaii the Council of Haida Nation, the Hereditary Chiefs Council, the Skidegate Band Council and the Old Masset Village Council.

During the visit,Tlingit & Haida’s Program Compliance (Enrollment) staff held three Tribal ID & Enrollment Drives (two in Old Masset and one in Skidegate) and Cultural Heritage & Education Manager Sarah Dybdahl met with the Skidegate Haida Immersion Program to review the program's efforts to preserve and revitalize the Haida language and also met with language teachers specializing in the Old Masset dialogue.

“This was my second visit to Haida Gwaii as we continue to work toward building lasting relationships with our relatives from the Haida Nation,” shared President Peterson. “For too long we’ve let an imaginary, colonial line separate us from one another. After this visit, I feel confident saying that we are well on our way to restoring the ties that have bonded our people since time immemorial. I’m grateful to the people of Haida Gwaii for welcoming us and treating us as family. We hope to return the favor one day soon.”

A delegation will also travel to the Yukon Territory, Canada in July to attend the Haa Kusteeyí Celebration and make the same kinds of connections with our Tlingit relatives.
Chief Justice Testifies Before Indian Affairs Committee
Tlingit & Haida’s Chief Justice Michelle Demmert testified before the United States Senate Indian Affairs Committee on June 19, 2019 in a legislative hearing regarding multiple bills which address violence against women in Indian Country and Indigenous communities. The hearing was organized to hear testimony regarding five bills ‒ Savanna's Act (S. 227), Justice for Native Survivors of Sexual Violence Act (S. 288), Native Youth and Tribal Officer Protection Act (S. 290), Not Invisible Act of 2019 (S. 982) and Bridging Agency Data Gaps and Ensuring Safety (BADGES) for Native Communities Act (S. 1853).

“As for the MMIW [Missing & Murdered Indigenous Women] crisis, substantial change is needed," testified Chief Justice Demmert. "While increasing the response to MMIW cases is important, prioritizing attention to providing the advocacy and support to women and girls to prevent abductions and murders is critical. Support is needed at the front lines where women and girls are experiencing a spectrum of violence from birth to death. Support from the federal government for these much needed services, in addition to the criminal justice reform, will help save Native women’s lives.”

Alaska Senator Lisa Murkowski was also present at the hearing and is a sponsor of Savanna’s Act. Senator Murkowski acknowledged Chief Justice Demmert in her opening remarks.

“What we’re all trying to do is to improve public safety and improve the justice system for our First Peoples, whether they be in Alaska or whether they be in reservations around the country or whether they be in our urban centers," shared Senator Murkowski. "I want to particularly welcome Michelle Demmert who is the Chief Justice for Tlingit & Haida. She also serves as the NCAI VAWA Task Force Chair. I appreciate a great deal, Michelle, the work you do. Your perspective on the importance of tribal provisions in VAWA, the need to strengthen them, these are so important for our efforts so that we are informed here. The insights that you are able to provide into the unique challenges that face Alaska tribes is so important to this discussion here today.”

Gunalcheesh, Haw’aa to Chief Justice Demmert for representing our Tlingit & Haida people and for speaking in support of justice for Native women everywhere. 

Click here to view a video recording of the legislative hearing.
Fall 2019 Enrollment for Haa Yoo X ’atángi Kúdi Lingít Language Immersion Nest
Application Period: July 1 - July 26, 2019

Tlingit & Haida's Cultural Heritage & Education department will be accepting enrollment applications beginning July 1st for the Haa Yoo X ’atángi Kúdi Lingít Language Immersion Nest! The language immersion nest includes exploratory curriculum, storytelling, quiet time and other special activities. The fall term for the language nest program will begin in September 2019 with classes held four days a week (Tuesday - Friday) at Tlingit & Haida’s Vocational Training & Resource Center in Juneau. If you have a child between the ages of 3-5 and would like them to participate in the Haa Yoo X ’atángi Kúdi program, make sure to submit an application for enrollment.
Save the Date: Alumni Scholarship
Scholarship Application Period: July 1 - September 15, 2019

Mark your calendars! The application period for the Alumni Scholarship will begin n July 1st! The scholarship fund was established over 20 years ago and provides supplementary scholarships to tribally-enrolled citizens who apply and are currently attending or plan to attend an accredited college or university in the pursuit of an education degree. Award levels are based on annual fundraising activities. Click here to learn more about how to apply.

For more information, contact the Higher Education program at , 1.800.344.1432 ext. 7329 or 907.463.7329.
Save the Dates: Back to School Celebration & Southeast Alaska Backpack Event
Back to School Celebration
Date: August 3, 2019
Time: Pre-K to 4th Grade (9:00 AM - Noon) / 5th to 12th Grade (1:00 - 4:00 PM)
Location: Elizabeth Peratrovich Hall (320 W. Willoughby Avenue - Juneau, AK)

The Back to School Celebration is coordinated by Tlingit & Haida’s 477 Division and will be held on August 3rd at the Elizabeth Peratrovich Hall in Juneau. Backpacks filled with school supplies will be distributed at the celebration featuring Celebrity Teen Coach Jesse Lebeau to motivate kids as they get ready for the new school year! Nearly 900 backpacks were given away at last year’s event. This is just one way Tlingit & Haida can help to ensure a great start to the school year for tribal youth! Application will be available on Tlingit & Haida's website beginning July 1st.
Southeast Alaska Backpack Event
Application Period: July 1 - August 2, 2019

Tlingit & Haida’s 477 Division will be distributing backpacks with school supplies to tribal youth in our Southeast Alaska service area in partnership with Southeast Alaska village tribes. Applications will be available beginning July 1st.

Eligibility Requirements:
  • Child(ren) must be Alaska Native and/or American Indian
  • Child(ren) must be between the age of preschool to grade 12
  • Child(ren) must be reside in Tlingit & Haida's service area

Contact your local tribe for more information!
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