Monday, November 14, 2011

Dear House Committee Chairman Darrell Issa, We Need YOU to Hold Hearings on Enforcement of the Indian Civil Rights Act

Dear Chairman Issa,

The ICRA was originally introduced and enacted as an effort to protect individual Indians form the “arbitrary and capricious” actions of tribal governments and/or officials. Unfortunately, while the ICRA was well intended and expressly forbid tribes from taking actions that violated an
individual’s rights, the ICRA failed to include an effective enforcement mechanism which would hold tribal officials accountable for violations of its provisions.

As a result, the number of civil rights violations in Indian Country has reached epidemic proportions. Thousands upon thousands have been stripped or denied the basic due process and equal protection rights provided for in the United States Constitution, the ICRA, and tribal laws.

Oversight hearings on the current civil rights situation in Indian Country are not only warranted, they are long over due. Therefore, I respectfully request that your Committee hold hearings on the civil rights problem in Indian Country and the lack of enforcement of the ICRA

Mr. Chairman, in April of 2010, Rep. Mike Thompsen thought the acts of some tribal governments so egregious, he requested then Chairman Nick Rahall hold hearings on the ICRA. This is one effort that should be bi-partisan. You should lead the way towards doing what is right.

With tribes like Pechanga, and Picayune, decimating their population and just recently, PALA which is also in your district joining a select crew of disgraceful tribal councils, PLEASE take the lead in providing enforcement of ICRA and protection for individual Indians. Sir, Apartheid is being practiced on reservations now and you need to help stop this from continuing.
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