FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 25, 2021
ARA and ANVCA Welcome Supreme Court’s Landmark Decision Recognizing Role of Alaska Native Corporations
ANCSA Regional Association (ARA) and Alaska Native Village Corporation Association (ANVCA) issued the following statement, reacting to the Supreme Court of the United States’ decision holding Alaska Native regional and village corporations should be recognized under the Indian Self Determination and Education Assistance Act’s (ISDA) definition of tribes in Yellen v. Confederated Tribes of the Chehalis Reservation:
ANCSA Regional Association and Alaska Native Village Corporation Association applaud the Supreme Court’s decision to ensure the federal government honors its promises to Alaska Natives and the communities we represent. In doing so, the Court affirmed “what the Federal Government has maintained for almost half a century: ANCs are Indian tribes under ISDA.”
Through the creation of Alaska Native regional and village corporations, Congress established a novel approach to federal Indian policy and for nearly 50 years, these unique corporations have served the health, educational, welfare and cultural needs of more than 140,000 Alaska Native shareholders.
We are pleased to see the Court affirm Alaska Native corporations’ eligibility for CARES Act funds to help our people and communities recover from the devastating effects of COVID-19. Alaska’s economy is only now starting to recover, and these funds are needed to help our communities get back on their feet.
ARA and ANVCA would like to extend their deepest thanks to Alaska’s congressional delegation, the State of Alaska, and the Alaska Federation of Natives for their unwavering support of Alaska Native people throughout this litigation.
ARA and ANVCA are committed to building greater understanding about the critical roles ANCs play in the lives of Alaska Native people, and we stand ready to unite with Indian Country to better serve all of our Indigenous communities.
For background on ANCs and the CARES Act, please go to https://ancsaregional.com/cares-act/.