Non-contiguous reservation land proposed for clinics that provide abortion services

A 1986 amendment to federal law allows tribes to acquire off-reservation land to serve the needs of its peoples. A recent court case upheld these tribal rights. The Arizona Republic explains:

Luis Plascencia, an assistant professor at Arizona State University, questioned the states-rights argument. "When states joined the union, they agreed to be a state, political entities authorized by the federal government," Plascencia said. "States are given power but it doesn't make them independent of the United States of America the same way cities are not independent.
South Dakota recently passed an anti-civil rights law that seeks to restrict the number of abortions performed in the state by imposing a waiting period and a prior consult from a non-medical religious organization.

It is time for tribal medical professionals to establish clinics that perform abortions on these non-contiguous parcels as islands of health care that supercede state law. The Northern Cheyenne, a Montana tribe, owns land near Bear Butte in western South Dakota considered "non-contiguous" reservation land.

If this doesn't move you, you're dead:

From an AP story at indianz.com:

Puerto Rico has seen a big jump in the number of residents identifying themselves as "American Indian" on the U.S. Census. Nearly 20,000 island residents claimed Indian heritage on the 2010 Census. That's up 48.8 percent from the 2000 count.


Bill Dithmer said...

IP while I do agree that it would be a great idea, it has been brought up before. IF you remember right that was one of the problems that Cecelia Fire Thunder, had when she was impeached from the tribe presidency. If I remember right it had a lot to do with the Grey Eagle bunch down there and their unwillingness to allow the women of the reservation to have any sexual freedom. Old beliefs die hard on the reservation. This is just one of the reasons that we are having trouble dragging ourselves out of the poverty that we live in.

larry kurtz said...

Hi Bill, good to have you.

President Fire Thunder's courageous stand was not in vain. One of the most debilitating aspects of the Nine Tribes is inadequate access to free and safe OB/gyn services. The suspicion among the tribes is real but goes largely ignored by the BIA. Clinics of one tribe are often avoided by members of other tribes.

There are out of state tribes with non-contiguous land in South Dakota; there is so much more for me to learn.

Someone correct me if this is wrong: the Crow were allied with the US, lost the Black Hills to the Lakota in the Fort Laramie Treaty but retain some non-contiguous ground in South Dakota.