Forum to focus on American Indian ‘self-determination, not termination’ act

The Center for American Indian Economic Development will host a forum titled “Indian Self-Determination Act” from 9 a.m. to noon Wednesday, April 14, at the High Country Conference Center.

A panel featuring four Native Americans who were involved with the creation and implementation of the act will discuss their efforts surrounding the self-determination part of the act.

“This is the single most important legislation that has impacted all tribal nations in the past 50 years,” said Levi Esquerra, program director for the Center for American Indian Economic Development. “I feel it is imperative that we bring together as many of the original cast members and let them share their experiences firsthand.”

Signed into law in 1975, the Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act was the culmination of 15 years of work, from the Kennedy to the Ford administrations, to restore self-government to Indian tribes and reverse a 30-year trend aimed at terminating federal relationships with tribes. Specifically, it allowed tribes to contract directly with and receive grants from federal agencies and manage their own affairs instead of being managed by a federal agency.

The event is free, but registration is required. Call (800) 442-8808 to register. There also will be an open reception from 5-6 p.m. on Tuesday, April 13, at The W.A. Franke College of Business Babbitt board room, room 207 on the second floor.

For information , contact Gwen Cody at (928) 523-7320.