The Pine Ridge Reservation is flooded! The aftermath of Winter Storm Ulmer, which hit the Midwest on March 13th, is still wreaking havoc on the territory where I now reside.
Our tribal president, Julian Bear Runner, has been working around the clock with a barebones staff for the past two weeks to keep catastrophe from turning into apocalypse. I was honored to serve as President Bear Runner’s campaign manager last year, and I am all the more pleased that we have a leader of his character during this crisis.
I and other members of the Lakota People’s Law Project team have now set up shop at tribal headquarters in Pine Ridge to join the effort. Over the past several days, we’ve observed that 1,500 tribal citizens remain displaced from their homes and 75-100 structures have been damaged by the flooding. 500 people remain without access to potable water, culvert systems are plugged, and roads are impassable.
Wopila! — Thank you!Chase Iron Eyes, Lead Counsel, Lakota People’s Law Project
Use this link to send an email to President Trump. This page will be populated with my information, just overwrite those fields with your information. Join OST President Bear Runner in calling for a federal declaration of disaster in South Dakota. Please send an email to President Trump today!
If you have trouble with that form, here is an example you can modify:
I stand with Oglala Sioux Tribal President Julian Bear Runner in requesting federal flood relief for South Dakota now. As a recent public statement by President Bear Runner makes clear, weeks after Winter Storm Ulmer flooded Lakota Sioux reservations in South Dakota, still no federal disaster support has been provided to the state or the tribes within it.
Numerous Sioux communities have been hit hard by the extraordinary weather event. On the Pine Ridge Reservation (Oglala Sioux Tribe), 1,500 citizens remain displaced from their homes and 75-100 structures have been damaged by flooding. 500 people remain without access to potable water, culvert systems are blocked, and roads are impassable. The tribe is facing millions of dollars of damage.
Indeed, all of South Dakota has been affected, and for this reason the state senate has passed a resolution, SR-7, calling on you to declare the entire state a federal disaster area, as you have done for Nebraska. This would expedite funding from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to South Dakotans, including tribal nations.
I join President Bear Runner in supporting SR-7. Please use your authority to help people in need as soon as possible.
More information about flood relief can be found here.
General inquiries: email@example.com
This is an initiative of the OST President’s Office. Your support now can help provide direct aid to people and rebuild areas within the Oglala Sioux Nation devastated in flooding resulting from Winter Storm Ulmer. Your help goes directly to the tribal government and those affected by the storm.
In-kind donations of the following are needed now. Please inquire before sending at firstname.lastname@example.org and send directly to West Hwy 18, OST President’s Office, Pine Ridge, SD 57770
— Bottled water and water storage containers
— Nonperishable food
— Diapers, toilet paper, and hygiene products
— Heavy equipment (e.g. Bobcats)
— Cars and trucks
— Solar-powered chargers
— Solar panels and wind turbines
— Green building supplies
— Tiny homes
— Electric generators
— Fuel containers
— Water pumps