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Spring is upon us and we’re sharing several noteworthy Native American headlines from the month of April. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn and stay up to date with the latest headlines all year long.

Native American Women Are Facing a Crisis via MSN “Native American women and girls are facing an epidemic of violence that is hiding in plain sight. They are being killed or trafficked at rates than the rest of the U.S. population (on some reservations, women are 10 times as likely to be murdered as the national average, according to). Some simply disappear, presumably forced into sex trafficking. These cases often go unsolved. Now, three senators are hoping to combat this epidemic. The bipartisan bill… was introduced last week by Lisa Murkowski, Republican from Alaska; Catherine Cortez Masto, Democrat from Nevada; and Jon Tester, Democrat from Montana. It aims to change what the a ‘lack of a diligent and adequate federal response’ to these crimes.”

Native Nation: Immersive New Play About Issues Facing Indigenous People via Phoenix New Times

  • “Native Nation, a new work by Sicangu Lakota playwright Larissa FastHorse, provides a rare theatrical glimpse into issues facing native people in Arizona. The play was commissioned by ASU Gammage and is presented by Cornerstone Theater Company. The immersive experience incorporates live theater, an artisan marketplace, a fashion show, and cultural performances. Cornerstone has a long history of creating works based off conversations with community members and inviting nonprofessionals to participate in set, prop, costume, and lighting design.”

This Native American inscription was found deep inside a cave. Two centuries later, scholars think they understand its meaning via The Washington Post

  • “At first glance, it looked like a set of black numbers and letters written in English, perhaps with some symbols included. It had gone unnoticed for nearly 200 years in a cave nestled in a wooded hillside overlooking Fort Payne, Ala. — population 14,000, about 60 miles southwest of Chattanooga, Tenn. — and was partially covered by graffiti. But when cave explorers found the inscriptions, they realized the significance. After years of research and analysis, a team of Native American scholars and anthropologists determined the inscriptions are the first evidence of the Cherokee syllabary — the tribe’s written system that uses symbols to create words — ever found in a cave. It details the ‘secluded, ceremonial’ activities of the tribe that once occupied the area.”

History’s Forgotten Pioneer: The First Native American Doctor via OZY

  • “As the sun slipped past the horizon, the young girl watched with growing anxiety as an elderly woman struggled to breathe. It was 1873, and they lived on the Omaha Reservation in the northeast corner of Nebraska. The old woman’s condition was worsening, but the White doctor — sent for four times — refused to come. The hours ticked by, and eventually, the woman died before the girl’s eyes. As she would later describe in her journal, Susan La Flesche Picotte vowed that night to do whatever it took to become a doctor. It took her nearly two decades, but in 1889, La Flesche became the first Native American to graduate from medical school…”
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