Boise Mayor David Bieter with the Indigenous People's Day proclamation.
By LORI ANN EDMO
BOISE — Mayor David Bieter proclaimed the second Monday in October as Indigenous Peoples Day in the City of Boise.
An event recognizing the proclamation was conducted at Boise City Hall plaza October 8 where many attended. Medicine Thunder Singers kicked off the event with an honor song while Tai Simpson, Nez Perce, a Boise resident, served as emcee.
Bieter said he’s honored to be able to issue the proclamation, “It’s a long time coming but I’m happy to do this.”
He said Boise joins 50 other cities around the country, along with four states. “We’re the first city in Idaho to proclaim this day, I hope we have good company soon,” he continued.
Bieter said he was really impressed with how many people showed up. “We’ve touched something important in our community and Native Americans. “I understand it’s a small part – there was another event before this (Return of the Boise Valley People) but little by little we’re building on that momentum.”
Lionel Q. Boyer, Shoshone-Bannock Culture Committee chairman, spoke on behalf of the Tribes. He spoke in the Shoshone language then said he was honored and pleased to be in attendance. He said Boise is the land of the “Sewoki” – land of the river willows, “Land of our ancestors – our people – they lived through these riparian valleys from time immemorial.” He thanked Mayor Bieter, representatives of the community and others speaking.
He welcomed the opportunity to represent on behalf of the Shoshone-Bannock Tribes recognizing the Tribes connection to “our part of Mother Earth.” Boyer said the proclamation is a step that will go forward to enhance the positive effort underway to create an understanding of the original inhabitants of this area. “It recognizes the historical injustices done to our people because of progress – the Corps of Discovery made notes of their exploration of this great country the people they met and way of life.” Boyer said they tried to understand at that time our societies, our governments, our spirituality and our existence with the environment, “They found that the first people had knowledge of the many properties of the earth, plants and minerals – they could determine the different seasons by understanding the changes in the environment.”
He added they understood the seasonal changes through the phases of the moon or the direction of the sun at the different points of the earth and today the many injustices of our people are being recognized in an effort to understand – correcting them is forthcoming.
Fort Hall Business Council member Lee Juan Tyler sings a song
about Indigenous People's Day.
Dawn Day Manning, Shoshone-Paiute, told a story about when she was attending Boise State University and was president of a small club called INC that wanted to protest Columbus Day. She set up a table with a sign that says Columbus Day sucks. A man came along and tore it up, started yelling profanities at her. She thought about it on her way from her reservation that morning and while being in Boise her tribal people’s homeland. She said it’s taken a long time to get here. She reminded everybody belonging to Boise sharing space is an honor and privilege. “It’s powerful to be a Native American woman – you belong to Boise if you love the land, love the trees – just remember us the first Indigenous people.”
Fort Hall Business Council member Lee Juan Tyler sang a song he composed about Indigenous Peoples’ Day.
Shoshone-Paiute council member Yvonne Powers was thankful to be allowed to take part in the historic event in the homeland of her tribal people. She said good people have fought intelligently and effectively as evidenced here at this gathering. “We are here because of them – the very lineage of indigenous people survived America’s manifest destiny, they survived America’s genocide, America’s colonization and America’s sins. Our people fought strong, fought smart and foremost they fought with the will to succeed and to live.” “To my Natives here today, you are the warrior descendants.”
Powers said the Shoshone-Paiute tribal council officially proclaimed the second Monday in October every year Indigenous Peoples Day. They also embrace Indian Day in September and designated April 16 as Shoshone-Paiute Tribes day in recognition of they day an executive order was signed creating their reservation. It’s a day to recognize their ancestors, their tribal people and “to celebrate us.”
Powers thanked those who had a hand in the Indigenous Peoples’ Day event, “Thank you Boise for amends offering to Indigenous people choosing to focus on this day on the original inhabitants of this land the beautiful Boise Valley – we are grateful to you.”
“Thank you for this landmark proclamation seeing your desire to demonstrate a mutual respect and friendship,” she continued. “And most of all an acknowledgement of the atrocities made against Indigenous people.”
Paulette Jordan, Democratic candidate for Idaho governor, said, “Once I’m governor, I’m hoping to make Indigenous People Day for the entire State of Idaho. It’s about time. Thank you for recognizing all of our relatives that are here and have been on this land for thousands of years.” She said it’s extremely important we acknowledge each other in this form of respect especially when you look at today’s day in age especially with Kavanaugh being appointed and how we treat our women. “Let’s not forget those of us who are worse off than all of us in this space. Remember our murdered and missing indigenous women in this country right now who are hurting, who need our voices, need us to acknowledge and recognize them especially when it comes to our justice system.”
Democratic candidate for Idaho Governor Paulette
Jordan thanked her sisters for putting this together, the city council of Boise, our leadership especially council woman Lisa Sanchez and her good friend Mayor Bieter, “I want to thank him very much for this progressive stance to acknowledge us our Indigenous people in the history of the State of Idaho.”
Juan J. Saldana from the Idaho Commission on Hispanic Affairs also spoke to the crowd.
FORT HALL — The Office of Special Trustee in Fort Hall is advising Individual Indian Money (IIM) account holders to update their addresses because the U.S. Postal Service will no longer deliver to rural route addresses as of January 1, 2019.
Instead the Post Office will only deliver to physical addresses the Shoshone-Bannock Tribes Public Safety office has assigned advises Gus Kerndt, OST Fiduciary Trust Officer.
However, one can still use a P.O. box for mail delivery but it won’t be accepted as a physical address required for drivers licenses, loan and some federal government services according to Wes Jones, Tribal Public Safety director.
Kerndt said there is a significant number of IIM account holders who have not yet updated their address to the new physical address. IIM checks or IIM quarterly statements sent to the old rural route address after January 1, 2019 will be returned by the Post Office to OST. If this happens, the IIM account will be classified as “Where Abouts Unknown” (WAU) and no money or statements will be sent to the account holder until the address is updated.
He advises one can update your rural route address to the new physical address in one of three ways: Calling the Fort Hall OST Field Office at 208-238-2310 and update your address over the phone; or come to the OST Field Office in the BIA Building at 49 Bannock Ave, Fort Hall and complete a change of address form; or call the Trust Beneficiary Call Center at their toll free number (1-888-678-6836) and update your address over the phone. The Call Center is open Saturday mornings from 8 a.m. to noon (MST) and during the work week from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. (MST).
If you do not know your new physical address, please contact one of the following individuals: Hal Hayball at 208-4478-3704; or High brooks Davis at 208-478-3736.