The Path to Self-Governance: How the Alliance of American Indian Leaders envisioned a new relationship between American Indian governments and the federal government

Edward Minnema

Abstract


In 1986 - 87, ten Indian tribes from throughout the United States began to meet in order to explore the constitutional relationship between the federal government and the Indian tribes. They called themselves the Alliance of American Indian Leaders. In partnership with the Indian Rights Association, these Tribes began a movement that led to the Congressional approval of Self-Governance Demonstration projects and eventual passage of P.L. 103-413, Title IV Tribal Self- Governance Act in 1994. This article shares the words and memories of those involved, specifically focusing on the role of the leaders from the Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe; recording their personal recollections of that journey as well as documenting their strength and determination to change the Federal bureaucracy that had kept the Indian people in perpetual poverty for decades.

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References


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