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Greetings, relatives.

A lot of news out there on this Halloween. Thanks for stopping by ICT’s digital platform.

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Millions of dollars are at stake on Nov. 8th when South Dakota voters weigh in on Amendment D, a ballot measure to expand Medicaid.

The big picture is that a “yes” vote for Medicaid expansion in South Dakota would bring millions of new dollars into the state and make healthcare more affordable for everyone. The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities calculates that roughly 42,500 low income people would qualify for health insurance and coverage would start July 23, 2023.

There is another way to gauge what’s at stake for Native people: A Lakota person living in North Dakota who qualifies for Medicaid is likely to get a full range of healthcare services or even referrals to specialists (what the Indian Health Service calls Purchased/Referred Care). That same person, if living in South Dakota, is limited by what’s left in the IHS budget.

Jerilyn Church, Cheyenne River, is the chief executive officer for the Great Plains Tribal Health Board. She says this is still a “huge issue” in South Dakota because there is not enough funding for IHS. But in North Dakota there is another source of money, Medicaid. READ MORE.Mark Trahant, ICT

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Indigenous Chef Jessica Pamonticutt is lighting a fire in Chicago’s culinary arts scene.

A citizen of the Menominee Indian Tribe of Wisconsin, she is serving not only delicious Indigenous food, but she’s also educating the public and breaking down barriers with her pop-up and catering business, Ketapanen Kitchen.

Pamonticutt, which means Walks First in Menominee, is an outlier in the larger scope of the culinary arts world, where only 22 percent of chefs and head cooks are women, and fewer than 1 percent of chefs are Indigenous. In Chicago, she’s a complete outlier.

“Chicago is a cultural mecca,” she told ICT. “You can find Salvadorian cuisine to Ethiopian cuisine. You can find food from every ethnicity under the sun here. The one thing you can’t find? Indigenous foods. And that makes no sense because Chicago is the ancestral home to so many Native nations. READ MORE. Amelia Schafer, Special to ICT

The dinosaurs and Haida totems greet visitors in the lobby of the Field Museum before giving way to the wooden floors and surrounding structure that came from Menominee tribal forests in Wisconsin.

Then, just a few steps inside the entrance to the permanent exhibition, “Native Truths: Our Voices, Our Stories,” is a land acknowledgement listing the 15 tribes that called the area home before many were forced from the area.

“You are on Native land,” a wall-sized greeting reminds visitors.

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For Debra Yepa-Pappan, Jemez Pueblo and Korean, who works as the museum’s Native community engagement coordinator, “Native Truths” is not an exhibition about Native people. READ MORE. Dan Ninham, Special to ICT

On a cold January morning, the hoarse voices of migrating swans echo out over a lake near Cathlapotle, a former Chinookan trading village on Washington’s Lower Columbia River. Farther along a paved pathway, through a dense bank of fog, is a warmer sound: the drumming and singing that accompanies the winter gathering, where members of the Chinook Indian Nation warm their cedar plankhouse and share winter ikanum, the stories they have passed down through countless generations.

Today’s winter gathering takes place in a plankhouse built in 2005. The village itself is across the floodplain, detectable only via excavation. The site is guarded by thick stands of stinging nettles and a pair of eagles that live in the cottonwoods high overhead. Lewis and Clark recorded about 900 people living here in 14 plankhouses built just like this one. That was the number of Cathlapotle residents who had survived earlier smallpox epidemics spread by European traders, according to Chinook Vice Chairman Sam Robinson.

Editor’s note: This story is part of a series that illuminates the historical context of tribal law in the Pacific Northwest and examines cases where tribes and tribal members have used federal courts to expand their rights under federal law. READ MORE. — Underscore News

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On the Monday edition of the ICT Newscast, Nicole Mann is making history 20 miles away from planet Earth. Fishing rights in Alaska, and news from the Northwest through ICT’s Underscore partnership.

Watch: 

A Cherokee Nation citizen with more than 20 years experience in the film and music industry has been tapped to head the tribe’s film office and handle the multimillion-dollar program offering incentives for productions.

Tava Maloy Sofsky will head the Cherokee Nation Film Office and will also serve as the tribe’s film commissioner, overseeing initiatives that include the Cherokee Film Incentive, which pays up to $1 million annually for production expenses incurred within the boundaries of the Cherokee Nation.

“There is no individual more passionate about and more experienced in growing this industry here in Oklahoma,” Jennifer Loren, director of the Cherokee Nation Film and Original Content, told ICT. READ MORE. Sandra Hale Schulman, Special to ICT

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We want your tips, but we also want your feedback. What should we be covering that we’re not? What are we getting wrong? Please let us know. dalton@ictnews.org.

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