Sunday, May 18, 2014

Greenfield Town Council Vote On Native American Burial Ordinance this Wednesday!

"It should be a matter of conscience for us all."
Diane Dix, Nolumbeka Project Secretary

Fifty years after Native American remains were disrespectfully and unceremoniously removed from the Mackin sand and gravel pit in Greenfield and bulldozed into the swamp across the road, the Greenfield Town Council will meet to decide on a Native American Burial Ordinance (see below) that could protect the ten acres of White Ash Swamp -- and serve to prevent such desecrations in the future. 

We hope that you will join the Nolumbeka Project and other concerned citizens to show your support as the Council meets on Wednesday, May 21 at 7 PM  at the GCTV studios, 393 Main Street, 3rd Floor, Greenfield.  

Coming two days after the 338th anniversary of the infamous Great Falls massacre, it is an appropriate time to take an important step in to offer the same respect and consideration to the First Peoples of this region that we should expect for all other Americans,  for all human beings.  

There will a time for public comment at the meeting.  Your presence and your voice can make a difference. 

We also encourage you to call or write the members of the Greenfield Town Council before Wednesday's meetimg  to indicate your support of immediate passage of the Native American Burial Ordinance.  (Click for list of telephone number and addresses of Town Councilors)

It's time. 

Chapter 105
General Reference
25 USC Chapter 32
42 USC 1996
Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act
MGL Part I Title VI Ch. 38 sec. 6 
MGL 114 Ch. 17

§ 105-1 Native American Burial Ground Ordinance
The Town of Greenfield recognizes, to the extent provided for in State or Federal law, any known place where American Indian remains have been buried or reburied as an American Indian Burial Ground, and as such, it shall be accorded the treatment and protections specified by Federal  or State Laws, including but not limited to 25 USC Chapter 32 (Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation), 42 USC 1996 (The American Indian Religious Freedom Act, and Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act, MGL Part I Title VI Ch. 38 sec. 6, MGL 114 Ch. 17. It is, furthermore ordered that as soon as human remains of a Native American and/or a Native American Burial Ground is discovered and reported and which falls within the jurisdiction of State or Federal law, a local advocate for Native Americans shall immediately be  appointed by the Mayor and the Narragansett Indian Tribe, who shall participate with others having jurisdiction  in the enforcement of State or Federal law relating to the treatment and protection of American Indian Burial Grounds within the Town of Greenfield. 

Nothing in this Native American Burial Ground Ordinance shall be deemed as acquiring any interest in land, or as imposing any land use regulation which is properly the subject of State or Federal law, nor is it intended by the creation and implementation of this Ordinance to supersede, modify, alter, change, or enlarge any existing Greenfield Town Ordinance, Zoning Bylaw, or State or Federal law related to Native American Burial Grounds.