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News Release

Navajo Nation Washington Office

For the first time in memory, on July 8, 2020 at 11 am EST, the House Energy and Commerce Committee will hold a full committee hearing on tribal matters, looking at the impacts of COVID-19 through the lens of tribal infrastructure.

Navajo Nation President Jonathon Nez and other elected tribal leaders will testify before the full committee about “Addressing the Urgent Needs of Our Tribal Communities” via webex. The hearing is designed to explore how federal decisions about tribal infrastructures endanger the health, education, economic development, and environments of Native people.

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COVID-19 continues to reveal that federal funding inequities deny tribes the same access to health care, broadband, electricity and running water that most Americans enjoy. The Navajo Nation has been among the hardest hit communities in the United States, with 7,840 confirmed cases and 378 deaths due to COVID-19 as of July 5, 2020.

President Nez will testify that the Navajo Nation has made tremendous sacrifices to flatten the Navajo Nation’s COVID-19 curve but that the federal government needs to invest in broadband, electricity and health care infrastructures in order for patients, students, businesses and government entities on the Navajo Nation to be able to recover from this pandemic.