Indian Country Today

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Here’s a look at what’s happening today:

Tribal COVID-19 memorial unveiled

The Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians dedicated a COVID-19 memorial on March 12.

Choctaw Chief Cyrus Ben signed a proclamation marking one year since the state o emergency on tribal lands, and recognized March 12, 2021 as COVID-19 Pandemic Awareness Day.

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Deb Haaland swearing in details announced

Incoming Interior Secretary Deb Haaland will be sworn into office on Tuesday evening in a small ceremony with family, the Interior Department announced.

The ceremony is one of two, a common practice, happening this week. A second swearing-in ceremony will be administered by Vice President Kamala Harris on Thursday.

Before Tuesday's swearing in, Haaland gave farewell remarks, her last as a member of Congress.

Colorado school district to retire controversial mascot

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) — A school district in Colorado has agreed to retire the Indians as the Cheyenne Mountain High School mascot despite efforts by some students and alumni to keep it.

The district board voted 4-1 on Monday to retire the mascot at the end of the current school year after over an hour of deliberations, KXRM-TV reported.

To read more, click here.

Absentee Shawnee tribal leader dies

Absentee Shawnee Tribal Lt. Gov. Kenneth Blanchard, 79, of Little Axe, Oklahoma passed away on March 12.

“The Lieutenant Governor has been a big part of the tribe and he will be deeply missed,” the tribe wrote in a Facebook post.

Navajo man charged with murder

Jameson Begaye, 41, of Shiprock, New Mexico, is facing a murder charge after he allegedly shot and killed a person on March 7, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office in New Mexico.

Begaye, Navajo, made his initial court appearance on March 12.

The victim, identified in court records at John Doe, according to the attorney's office, was shot following an altercation at a residence near Shiprock.

For additional information, click here.

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