January 28, 2010, Cambridge – Native American Caucus students at the Harvard Kennedy School are taking action in response to the inadequate national response to the crisis on Indian reservations in the Dakotas due to severe ice storms and freezing temperatures. Last weekend, a powerful snow and ice storm ripped through the region, felling power lines, and cutting off power and water to thousands of South Dakotans, many of them on the Cheyenne River and Standing Rock Indian Reservations. When full power and water will be restored remains in question.
The ice storms cut off electricity in an area about the size of Connecticut. With no electricity, no heat, no running water, and a wind chill below zero, a crisis is mounting. The Chairman of the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe has declared a state of emergency for his community and is calling for immediate assistance.
The tribes are working hard to bring families in out of the cold into shelters. The South Dakota National Guard, the State’s Department of Public Safety as well as the Army Corps of Engineers have come to the reservation and supplied some emergency generators. Help also is coming in the Red Cross and other tribes. But even with this assistance these tribes, among the poorest communities in the United States, are not able to meet the overwhelming needs of their communities.
Outside the frozen plains of the Dakotas, this human crisis has received little attention. The Native American Caucus student organization at Harvard Kennedy School would be grateful to American citizens to give the spotlight to their fellow Native American citizens. They are in great need of your help and aid. The American People need to be aware of this emergency situation.
To assist the Cheyenne River and Standing Rock Tribes, contact Stacy LaCompte at Wakpa Sica Reconciliation Place at (605) 280-8588.
MEDICAL NEEDS: Dialysis Patients/Glucose Strips/Financial Support for Hotels
The dialysis patients have all been evacuated three hours away to Rapid City , SD. They are staying in hotels for at least a week and half, probably longer. Financial contributions are needed to help the families pay for their hotel expenses and food. An account has been set up at Wells Fargo to help with these expenses. You can contribute at any Wells Fargo or send to the Rapid City branch. Link To News Story
Cheyenne Dialysis Patients (c/o Dew Bad Warrior)
Acct. #: 5815904338
1615 N 7th St.
Rapid City, SD 55701
Medical Items Needed on the Reservation (shipping address below):
° Glucose Strips
° First Aid Kits
° Children’s Tylenol
° Children’s Cough Syrup
The Tribe has depleted its emergency budget with the two blizzards that already hit the reservation since December. It needs funds to help buy food and supplies for the community and volunteers, to pay for gas and overtime for the workers, to replace the motor at the water pump station that was destroyed, etc.
WIRE DONATIONS TO:
Cheyenne River Sioux 2010 Disaster Account
Direct to: United Bkrs Bloomington ABA # 091 001 322
Beneficiary Bank: Account Number 250 3373
State Bank of Eagle Butte
Eagle Butte , SD 57625
Final Credit: Account Holder @ UBB Customers Bank
Account Holder: CRST 2010 Disaster, Account Number 103173
MAIL CHECK DONATIONS TO:
Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe/2010 Disaster Account
Cheyenne River Sioux Tribal Chairman’s Office
Attn: Ice Storm Emergency Fund
PO Box 590
2001 Main Street (Tribal Offices)
Eagle Butte , SD 57625
CHEYNNNE RIVER SIOUX CONTACTS:
Robin Le Beau, Chairman’s Assistant: (610) 568-2101
Joe Brings Plenty, Tribal Chairman: (605) 365-6548
CRST Emergency Coordination Center : (605) 964-7711
01 February 2010