"Since the birth of tribal reservations created by our ancestors and the U.S. government, these same land boundaries have been a safe haven for many criminals who have at times been our tribal leadership. Illegal activities such as corruption and the misuse of tribal funds have taken place in most tribal communities, if not all.
This learned behavior has taken its toll on the American Indian population across the U.S. When will it stop? What can be done?
Over the years as I observed this kind of behavior, I have come to the conclusion that as Indian people, we need to take action in a way that will put a damper on criminal activity, corruption and almost continual misuse of funds.
I don’t blame the funding agencies, whose hearts are in the right place when awarding monies and whose generosity is appreciated by American Indian communities. But in some cases, tribal leaders and other interested parties have their hands out when they see the dollar signs dangling in front of them, especially when they know they’ll get funding based on the fact that there remain many disparities among us and funding is very much needed in Indian communities.
What’s sad about this situation is that too often, the only beneficiaries will be the leaders themselves and their family and friends."
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Delvin Cree: Tribes need to safeguard their funding
(The Grand Forks Herald 12/6)