KWSO News for Fri., Jun. 19, 2020

The Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs Covid-19 update yesterday reported one additional positive case of Covid-19 for 55 cases now total.  Of that – 42 people have recovered.  852 tests have been done in all at the Warm Springs Health & Wellness Center.

COVID-19 has claimed four more lives in Oregon, raising the state’s death toll to 187.  The Oregon Health Authority early yesterday reported 148 new confirmed and presumptive cases of COVID-19 bringing the state total to 6,366.

Warm Springs Children’s Protective Services is assisting 70 families with an Energy Bill Assistance Program.  The program is for low income households with children.   Flyers went up yesterday morning and by the end of the day they’d received enough applications to spend out the grant funded program.  Applications were taken on a first come, first serve basis.  When more grant funding is available CPS will let the community know.

The Museum at Warm Springs will reopen to the public on Tuesday, July 7. The Museum has been closed since April 1 due to the Covid-19 pandemic.  The Museum’s reopening will be celebrated with a new exhibition titled, “The Path of Resilience,” which will featured will be beautifully beaded objects, woven treasures and various items selected from the Museum’s permanent collection and archives department.  Admittance to the Museum’s main exhibition area will be limited to 10 people with no more than five in the gallery at one time. Visitation to the Museum Gift Shop will be limited to two people unless the visitors are in one car or unit.

Despite the pandemic, Oregonians cast a record number of votes in last month’s primary. Final numbers released yesterday showed that more than One-point-three million voters participated.  That exceeded the old record set four years ago by more than one hundred thousand voters.  Many states delayed their primaries because of the pandemic. But Oregon was not heavily affected because elections in the state are conducted entirely by mail.  The big increase in voters was due part to the state’s automatic voter registration system. That uses drivers’ license records to automatically register Oregon citizens to vote.

Warm Springs Tribal Member and former Tribal Councilperson Carina Miller will launch her campaign for the Oregon Senate in District 30 tomorrow with a virtual launch party.  District 30 comprises all of Baker, Grant, Harney, Jefferson, Malheur, and Wheeler counties, as well as parts of Deschutes, Lake, and Wasco counties. It is currently represented by Republican Lynn Findley of Vale who held his virtual campaign launch yesterday.  The 30th district is the largest in the state.  Election Day is November 3rd.  You can learn more about Democratic candidate, Miller’s campaign at  Incumbent Findley’s website is

In just about any other year, Juneteenth, the holiday celebrating the day in 1865 that all enslaved black people learned they had been freed from bondage, would be marked by African American families across the nation with a cookout, a parade or a community festival. But Juneteenth 2020 will be a day of protest today in many places. Celebrations held from coast to coast will include marches and demonstrations of civil disobedience. And like the nationwide protests that followed the recent police involved deaths of black men and women in Minnesota, Kentucky and Georgia, Juneteenth celebrations are likely to be remarkably more multiracial this year.  At a Black Lives Matter rally hosted by Rose City Justice on June 10th Warm Springs Tribal Member Amanda Squiemphen Yazzie spoke.  “I am here today to stand in solidarity with black people across the world.   Together we are fighting the same fight that has been happening for the last 500 years.  Black Lives mattered then, Black Lives matter now and they will continue to matter for an eternity and beyond.  We are fighting with you and we are fighting for you.  I want to leave you all with something my dad has always said to me growing up.  They can take our land, they can take our culture but the one thing they cannot take our education.  Do not stop learning. Do not stop educating yourself and those around you.  And most importantly do not stop speaking because what we choose to do today will impact the next 7 generations and beyond. “

Please take  time today, if you have not already done so, to complete your 2020 Census Questionnaire.  You can send back the paper form by mail or do it online.    Census results are used to determine how much funding local communities receive for key public services.   Shana Radford is a Tribal Partnership specialist for the US Census who says It’s really stepping up and the responsibility for all of us to try and contribute back to our community.  “I’m making sure my future generations are counted so it’s not just about today, right now, it’s really about our futures generations about the collective of our people and making sure we are still here for the next 7 generations.”  The local Warm Springs Community Counts Committee has an incentive event today and again next Friday (6/26/20) for those who have done their census questionnaire.  Today from 11am – 2pm any household that has done their 2020 census can pick up a gift and lunch at the Community Center parking lot, the Simansho Longhouse and the Seekseequa Fire Hall.  Masks should be worn and the thank you gift and lunch will be done drive through style.