Indian farmers prepare for discrimination trial
The plaintiffs in a landmark discrimination lawsuit against the Department of Agriculture are preparing for a trial.

Indian farmers and ranchers say they were systematically denied loans and services due to their race. The Keepseagle case follows the settlement of similar claims made by African-American farmers.

President Barack Obama is seeking $1.25 billion for the African-American farmers and Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack has said he wants to improve his department's civil rights record. But the Indian farmers say they haven't heard much from the new administration.

“That was a month ago. We have not received any further word,” attorney Tom Sellers told the Associated Press of a meeting requested by the Indian plaintiffs.

Both sides will be in court in September for a conference hearing. Sellers said a trial date could be set at that time.

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Farmers prepare for trial (AP 5/23)