24th Navajo Nation Council - Office of the Speaker
On June 14, Speaker Seth Damon (Bááhaalí, Chichiltah, Manuelito, Red Rock, Rock Springs, Tséyatoh) and Council Delegate Nathaniel Brown (Dennehotso, Kayenta, Chíłchinbii'tó) of the 24th Navajo Nation Council furthered equality efforts by reaffirming the third week of June as Diné Pride Week with the second annual signing of the 2020 Proclamation.
“In this recognition, we really push that forward with individuals from not only the Diné Pride organization, but on the legislative side here from the Navajo Nation Council as well, to pave the way for the rest of the whole world,” said Damon. “For all the other Indian tribes across the nation, for all the other Indigenous peoples to really embrace what their community has, what each and every community has across the world.”
The proclamation recognizes the ongoing efforts of individuals and organizations that advocate for equality and equity for the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, and Two-Spirit community (LGBTQ2S+) on the Navajo Nation. The current Proclamation indicates the importance of these individuals to the Navajo Nation’s livelihood and diversity since time immemorial.
Delegate Brown emphasized the importance of k’é and the teachings of respect that are inclusive to all and by practicing it, the Navajo Nation would be rebalanced through traditional ways of life.
“In my mind and the way it was explained to me [is] k’é is everyone- including people that we disagree with. We may not like the way they were born into this world - the way the Holy People designed them,” said Brown, “We’re all beautiful. We’re all different. I think when we become inclusive of all our people maybe we’ll bring the rain back.”
The signing of the proclamation kicked off Navajo Nation Pride week, hosted by Diné Pride, where a majority of the events will be conducted virtually. On Saturday, a Navajo Nation Pride Parade and Rainbow Lighting & Closing Ceremony will be held in Window Rock, Arizona at the Navajo Nation Council Chambers.
Alray Nelson, Executive Director for Diné Pride and Founder of Diné Equality, acknowledged the leadership the Navajo Nation Council has shown in furthering protection and equality for all of its citizens. Nelson emphasized the violence that disproportionately affects transgender women of color due to them being at the intersection of racism, sexism, and transphobia.
“Diné Pride Week sends a monumental message to that young person that is watching right now, that one young person hearing proudly it's okay to be who you are and the Navajo people stand behind you,” said Nelson
The theme of this year’s Diné Pride, as stated on their website is “focused on honoring all Indigenous Womxn who continue to uplift communities, lead our movements and are the changemakers for our Sovereign Nations.”
For more information regarding the hybrid Diné Pride Week events being facilitated through the Diné Pride organization, please visit https://www.navajonationpride.com/ or visit the Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/NavajoNationPride/.