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The former Cheif Executive Officer of the National Congress of American Indians alleges he was dismissed in retaliation after disagreeing with its governing body about a sexual harrassment investigation and the firing of non-Native employees, according to a lawsuit set to be heard in a Washington D.C. court.

Dante Desiderio, the former CEO, alleged that NCAI’s governing executive committee retaliated against him amid disagreements over a sexual harassment inquiry involving the group's former general counsel. Desiderio and the committee also disagreed over firing non-Native employees, which Desiderio claims violated a Washington D.C. law that prohibits race-based employment discrimination.

NCAI has denied any wrongdoing and had sought to have the case moved to the federal United States District Court for the District of Columbia. On Monday, a federal judge denied that request and said the state-level D.C. Superior Court, where Desiderio’s allegations about NCAI violating the D.C. Human Rights Act, can be heard. READ MORE. Chris Aadland, Underscore News and ICT


Navajo Nation citizen Roselyn Tso was confirmed by the Senate Wednesday to lead the Indian Health Service, the first permanent director the agency has had in nearly two years.

Tso’s term will last four years. The director of Indian Health Service is the most senior position that helps to develop healthcare policy for 2.6 million Indigenous people across the nation.

It had taken seven months for Tso to be confirmed as director of the agency. President Joe Biden nominated Tso in March. Her nomination hearing was in late May. READ MORE.Pauly Denetclaw, ICT

Darren "Young D" Metz and Quinton "Yung Trybez" Nyce want the world to know that after more than two years surviving the pandemic, they’re doing just fine. That’s the message behind their latest single, “I’m Good.”

“We're just as anxious, but putting that energy into a good thing and letting the world know, like, ‘We're good,’" Nyce said.

The duo grew up playing basketball together on the Haisla Nation reserve in Kitamaat Village, British Columbia and dreaming of bringing Indigenous voices and stories to listeners across the world. They formed Snotty Nose Rez Kids in 2016, and the following year they dropped their first two albums, “Snotty Nose Rez Kids” and “The Average Savage,” just nine months apart.

Metz and Nyce caught up with Underscore News about their journey, their message and what’s next. This conversation, which took place shortly before they performed for an electric crowd at Mississippi Studios in Portland, Oregon on Sept. 7, has been edited and condensed. READ MORE.Underscore News

The Montana Supreme Court, in a split ruling on Wednesday, upheld a temporary order blocking the enforcement of two election-related laws passed by the 2021 Montana Legislature while the laws are being challenged in court.

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Five justices agreed with a lower-court judge who blocked a law that required people using a student identification to register and vote provide another document including their name and address.

Four justices agreed that District Court Judge Michael Moses was correct in temporarily blocking a law that ended Election Day voter registration while the court case plays out. READ MORE.Associated Press

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On the weekend edition of the ICT Newscast, an overdue apology and an update on voter suppression. Also, states are acting on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Relatives. Meet this year’s Miss Navajo.

Watch here:

Hawai'i Gov. David Ige appointed several people, including some prominent Native Hawaiian activists, to a new board charged with managing Mauna Kea summit lands underneath some of the world’s most advanced astronomical observatories.

Two of the eight appointees — Lanakila Mangauil and Noe Noe Wong-Wilson — were leaders of 2019 protests that brought a halt to the construction of the Thirty Meter Telescope, the latest observatory proposed for the mountain on Hawaii’s Big Island.

Many Native Hawaiians consider the summit sacred, and protesters objected to building yet another telescope there. The summit currently hosts about a dozen telescopes built since the late 1960s.

Responding to the protests, the state created the Mauna Kea Stewardship and Oversight Authority this year with a new law that says Mauna Kea must be protected for future generations and that science must be balanced with culture and the environment. Native Hawaiian cultural experts will have voting seats on the governing body, instead of merely advising the summit’s managers as they do now.

The eight nominations must be confirmed by the state Senate. READ MORE. Associated Press


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