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Telling the stories of Indigenous communities by Indigenous journalists is at the core of Indian Country Today. Since our beginnings in 1981 as a weekly newspaper, ICT has grown into the largest news organization serving Native American communities. In April 2020, we expanded into public broadcasting through a daily newscast about how the coronavirus pandemic has affected American Indians, First Nations and Alaska Natives.

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Longtime activist Debra White Plume, Oglala, dies at 66

Indian Country Today file: Debra White Plume will be the keynote speaker at the water rights symposium Saturday.

Debra White Plume will be the keynote speaker at the water rights symposium Saturday.

Debra White Plume championed rights of the Oglala Sioux Tribe and led protests protecting land, water and treaty rights.

Her husband, Alex White Plume, told the New York Times that her cause of death was cancer in her lungs and abdomen. She died Nov. 10 in Rapid City, South Dakota.

White Plume was among the first people to join the American Indian Movement occupation of Wounded Knee in 1973; she later founded Owe Aku, Bring Back the Way, an advocacy group dedicated to cultural preservation and protecting treaty rights.

She took leading roles in promoting nonviolent direct action protesting oil pipelines and helped establish camps for water protectors during actions at Standing Rock opposing the Dakota Access Pipeline in 2016.

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Native American LGBTQ+ youth at high risk of suicide

File: Five suicides in the past two months have shaken the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.

File photo: Five suicides in the past two months have shaken the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.

LGBTQ+ Native and Alaskan Native youth are 2.5 times more likely to attempt suicide than their peers, new research shows. 

However, supportive families and LGBTQ+ affirming schools can dramatically reduce suicide risk.

“It is apparent that exposure to both LGBTQ-based stigma and racism has compounding effects, and places American Indian/Alaskan Native youth who are two spirit/LGBTQ at greater risk of suicide,” said Amy Green, director of research at the Trevor Project.

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California Native commission receives 1K preorders for license plate

nagpra-artifacts

Designed by Sacramento filmmaker Curtis Corona, the “Protect Native Culture” plates feature an image of a Tule River Tribe rattlesnake basket.

Proceeds from sales of the license plates will go directly to support California Native American Heritage Commission programming including implementation of the California Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act, training for tribal and government agencies on laws protecting California Native American resources and culture and others.

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7 Native inventions that revolutionized medicine, public health

Decolonize Your Medicine – Women’s March D.C.

Another of the unique signs on the day.

Native Americans invented early versions of hypodermic syringes, aspirin related pain relievers, oral birth control, sun screen, baby bottles, mouthwash and oral hygiene and suppositories.

These inventions continue to influence medicine and public health today.

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Watch: Animating the Indigenous

LA Skins Fest founder and Choctaw citizen Ian Skorodin talks about a fellowship to get Indian Country involved in the digital effects industry.

Plus, Indian Country Today national correspondent Joaqlin Estus has more details on why Southwest Alaskan tribes are celebrating a Trump administration decision.

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