- By Native News Online Staff
MINNEAPOLIS — The National Native American Boarding School Healing Coalition (NABS) says more mental wellness support resources are needed for Native Americans dealing with trauma associated with the discovery of graves at Indian residential schools in Canada earlier this year.
“We believe that healing will need to be community-led, and Tribal Nations should be at the forefront of determining what mental, spiritual and physical supports their citizens will need as this truth-telling process unfolds,” NABS CEO Christine Diindiisi McCleave (Turtle Mountain Anishinaabe) said.
NABS and the National Indian Health Board initiated requests that led to Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Rep. Sharice Davids (D-KS) and 19 other members of Congress sending a letter to the Indian Health Service (IHS). The letter called for protections to be put in place for those who will experience trauma as further revelations emerge during the Department of Interior’s Federal Indian Boarding School Truth Initiative.
“The first step we need to take is caring for our boarding school survivors,” said NABS Director of Policy and Advocacy Deborah Parker (Tulalip Tribes). “We are grateful that Sen. Warren, Congresswoman Davids and the Congressional members who signed this letter have recognized the importance and urgency of putting in place trauma-informed support for our American Indian, Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian relatives.
McCleave pointed out Canada has made available resources to survivors of residential schools, such as a national hotline, as an example of steps that could be implemented in the United States.
Recently, the federal government in Canada also committed to spending $107 million on mental health, culture and emotional services to support healing from boarding school intergenerational trauma. This was part of $321 million in new funding that also includes helping Indigenous communities search burial sites at former residential schools.
NABS continues to advocate for a Truth and Healing Commission on Indian Boarding Schools, as the most complete step toward fully uncovering the truth, uplifting survivors, and charting a path toward healing.
More Stories Like ThisNative American Woman on FBI List Arrested for Allegedly Selling Drugs on Reservation
Tribal Leaders Urge Interior Sec. Deb Haaland for Tribal Consultations to Protect Gray Wolves
Global Indigenous Council Sends President Biden and Others a Message on California Recall Vote
Shelby Elizabeth Mata (Comanche Nation) Crowned Miss Native American USA 2021-2022
Native News Weekly (9/12/2021): D.C. Briefs
Native Perspective. Native Voices. Native News.
We launched Native News Online because the mainstream media often overlooks news that is important is Native people. We believe that everyone in Indian Country deserves equal access to news and commentary pertaining to them, their relatives and their communities. That's why the story you’ve just finished was free — and we want to keep it that way, for all readers. We hope you'll consider making a donation to support our efforts so that we can continue publishing more stories that make a difference to Native people, whether they live on or off the reservation. Your donation will help us keep producing quality journalism and elevating Indigenous voices. Any contribution of any amount — big or small — gives us a better, stronger future and allows us to remain a force for change. Donate to Native News Online today and support independent Indigenous journalism. Thank you.