Items by Anna V. Smith

How an Arrow Lakes elk hunt became a case of tribal recognition
How an Arrow Lakes elk hunt became a case of tribal recognition
Rick Desautel shot an elk to prove the Sinixt descendants are not legally ‘extinct.’ Now the Supreme Court of Canada will decide.
The Klamath River now has the legal rights of a person
The Klamath River now has the legal rights of a person
A Yurok Tribe resolution allows cases to be brought on behalf of the river as a person in tribal court.
Q & A: Why a whistleblower went AWOL from the Fire Service
Q & A: Why a whistleblower went AWOL from the Fire Service
In 2068, the U.S. faces year-round wildfires across the West with drafting wildland firefighters.
When public lands become tribal lands again
When public lands become tribal lands again
A story of fire, stolen lands, and how hard it is to get the U.S. to follow its own laws.
The Bureau of Indian Affairs steps up its harassment policy
The Bureau of Indian Affairs steps up its harassment policy
Timeframes for responding to allegations and more show improvements from ‘zero tolerance’ rhetoric.
How do tribal nations’ treaties figure into climate change?
How do tribal nations’ treaties figure into climate change?
U.S. courts rarely favor environmental protections as a right — except when it comes to tribes expressing their treaty rights.
Former Bureau of Indian Affairs director engaged in abusive behavior, no action taken
Former Bureau of Indian Affairs director engaged in abusive behavior, no action taken
Bryan Rice’s behavior at the BIA highlights a culture of harassment and inaction.
Denver cop with tattoo resembling militia group logo killed tribal citizen in 2015
Denver cop with tattoo resembling militia group logo killed tribal citizen in 2015
Officer Michael Truadt says he is not a member of the Three Percenters.
Senate hears stories of Indian Country’s missing and murdered
Senate hears stories of Indian Country’s missing and murdered
Data gaps, understaffing and lax investigations have deepened the crisis.
Arizona’s long road to make elections accessible
Arizona’s long road to make elections accessible
In Coconino County, relocating five polling places caused confusion this election cycle. By 2020, it must fix 46 to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act.
How the Americans with Disabilities Act could affect Native American voters
How the Americans with Disabilities Act could affect Native American voters
The relocation of polling sites near the Navajo Nation months before midterm elections raises concerns of future voter suppression.
5 obstacles for Native voters in the November midterms
5 obstacles for Native voters in the November midterms
Native Americans have low participation rates in federal and state elections, but the problem doesn’t lay with political passivism.
Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s impact on Indian Country
Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s impact on Indian Country
The recently confirmed justice was heavily opposed by Indigenous leaders.
Why don’t anti-Indian groups count as hate groups?
Why don’t anti-Indian groups count as hate groups?
The current understanding of ‘hate groups’ excludes those who undermine tribal rights and sovereignty.
The next Supreme Court pick could shape Indian law for decades
The next Supreme Court pick could shape Indian law for decades
The highest court in the land holds legal power over tribal nations, but it lacks knowledge of tribal law.
How the Yurok Tribe is reclaiming the Klamath River
How the Yurok Tribe is reclaiming the Klamath River
For the first time, the largest tribe in California has one of its own to lead its legal battles.
As Oregon’s midterms approach, divided sides dig in
As Oregon’s midterms approach, divided sides dig in
The right and the ‘resistance’ are doubling down after the election of Donald Trump.
Bureau of Indian Affairs director resigns
Bureau of Indian Affairs director resigns
As the agency navigates turbulent times, its leadership changes hands.
By the numbers: harassment in the Interior Department
By the numbers: harassment in the Interior Department
Findings from the department’s survey.
Harassment pervades the Bureau of Indian Affairs
Harassment pervades the Bureau of Indian Affairs
One of the oldest agencies in the Department of Interior appears to have some of its worst harassment problems.
What Northwestern tribes say about the Jordan Cove pipeline
What Northwestern tribes say about the Jordan Cove pipeline
Under Trump, the natural gas pipeline gets a third chance.
Latest: Long-term noise pollution gives birds PTSD
Latest: Long-term noise pollution gives birds PTSD
New research links natural gas compressors with physical impacts on birds.
Latest: Another lease on life for the Salton Sea?
Latest: Another lease on life for the Salton Sea?
Now that water deliveries have ended, it’s a race for a solution.
What Trump’s Supreme Court pick holds for Indian Country
What Trump’s Supreme Court pick holds for Indian Country
Neil Gorsuch’s background in Indian law and Western issues could be useful to tribal litigants.
In a burning West, wildfire smoke threatens public health
In a burning West, wildfire smoke threatens public health
Montana hospitals handled an increase of respiratory-related problems this year.
How states generate money from the land they own
How states generate money from the land they own
From Arizona to Oregon, states have different tactics to make money off their state trust lands.
A ‘war on the Republican establishment’ comes West
A ‘war on the Republican establishment’ comes West
Former Trump strategist Steve Bannon aims to unseat incumbents in the 2018 midterms.
A Northwest tribal sovereignty battle, centered on culverts
A Northwest tribal sovereignty battle, centered on culverts
21 tribal nations wait to see if the Supreme Court will hear a decades-old case about salmon.
What is the Indian Health Service?
What is the U.S. Geological Survey?
High Country News Classifieds