Opinion | Federal Recognition

Editorial: Tribes in Virginia still struggle for federal recognition





"Virginia honored the commonwealth’s Indian tribes last week, a subject that the U.S. Congress continues to ignore. Perhaps the new Congress elected last week will change that.

Gov. Bob McDonnell called attention to the importance of Virginia’s tribes by proclaiming November as American Indian Heritage Month. Among the tribal leaders at the ceremony was Sharon Bryant, chief of the Monacan Indian Nation based in Amherst County.

Doug Domenech, Virginia’s Secretary of Natural Resources and chairman of the event, said the state has “a unique legal, historic and political relationship with her 11 state-recognized Indian tribes. And we recognize that consultation with tribes should be meaningful, in good faith and entered into on a government-to-government basis. We are honored to partner with them.”

Six of Virginia’s tribes, including the Monacans, are still seeking federal recognition, which would entitle them to benefits available to hundreds of other tribes around the country."

Get the Story:
Editorial: Virginia Tribes Still Struggle for Recognition (The Lynchburg News-Advance 11/13)