Harold Frazier: Indian country demands actions, not words, from the White House



President Harold Frazier of the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe addresses the National Congress of American Indian in Albuquerque, New Mexico, October 23, 2019. Photo by Kevin abourezk

Statement by President Frazier on the White House Tribal Nations Summit

Thursday, November 18, 2021

By Harold Frazier

President, Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe

EAGLE BUTTE, South Dakota – Just finished attending the White House Tribal Nations Summit and am not impressed. I waited two days for the opportunity to brief someone on what is really going on here on the Cheyenne River Reservation, to no avail. The spectacle put on by the current administration has left me and a majority of Indian countries speechless and, more blatantly, without action. Currently, my people sit in waiting rooms of Indian Health Service hospitals for over 36 hours, desperately in need of attention, and cannot even get into bed. The last tribal member kicked off the reservation has been sent to another state hundreds of miles away from family and familiar faces. This president and his administration leave my people in the hallways and parking lots while they fill computer meeting screens with groups of people who are not part of our health care system where we live. We can’t expect anything to be accomplished when the Indian health service isn’t even discussing COVID in the White House. Like it or not, IHS is our healthcare provider and that’s all we have to take care of ourselves and deal with the pandemic. Just because we are no longer fighting against the White House to save our people does not mean that this White House is working for or with us. The responsibilities flowing from the treaties between our two nations are found in the halls and parking lots of this democracy, as do my people, and it costs lives. I expected more from this Presidency and when you look at the voting map, you can clearly see that we have all done the same. You had your Tribal Nations show, now give us some Tribal Nations action. It will not be done on your computer screen and it is high time you came here to see for yourself.


Harold Frazier is serving his second consectuvei term as president of the Cheyenne River Sioux tribe, an Indian nation based in South Dakota. He is also president of the Great Plains Tribal Chairmen’s Association. He was previously president and vice-president of his tribe and regional vice-president of the National Congress of American Indians.


Related stories

Cronkite News: Tribal chiefs welcome return of White House meeting (November 18, 2021)
White House Tribal Nations Summit – Day Two – November 16, 2021 (November 17, 2021)
Secretary Haaland Announces New Tribal Advisory Committee to Home Office (November 16, 2021)
The Ministry of Agriculture announces the initiatives of Indian countries (November 16, 2021)
White House Tribal Nations Summit Day Two Agenda (November 16, 2021)
President Biden signs decree on violence against indigenous people (November 15, 2021)
White House Tribal Nations Summit – Day 1 – November 15, 2021 (November 15, 2021)
Attorney General Merrick Garland addresses the White House Tribal Nations Summit (November 15, 2021)
Federal Agencies Collaborate In Efforts To Protect Tribal Treaty Rights (November 15, 2021)
Biden Administration Launches Tribal Homelands Initiative for Co-stewardship of Federal Lands and Waters (November 15, 2021)
White House Tribal Nations Summit Day 1 Agenda (November 15, 2021)
Biden administration announces Indigenous languages ​​initiative (November 15, 2021)
Biden administration seeks to protect sacred areas in New Mexico from development (November 15, 2021)
Center for Western Priorities Welcomes Protection of Sacred Areas in New Mexico (November 15, 2021)
White House issues ‘progress report’ for Tribal Nations Summit (November 15, 2021)
White House Backgrounder: Building a New Era of Nation-to-Nation Engagement (November 15, 2021)
White House Tribal Nations Summit – Day 1 – November 15, 2021 (November 14, 2021)
White House Tribal Nations Summit – Day Two – November 16, 2021 (November 14, 2021)
President Biden Relaunches White House Tribal Nations Summit (September 22, 2021)



Previous The Minnesota Timberwolves celebrate the Prairie Island Indian community at Native American Heritage Night on Nov. 18
Next Creative sisters celebrate Indian culture in nostalgic animated videos