Dear Tribal Members,

Blessings to each of you for good health and prosperity this year!

Fundraising efforts have been ongoing for coats for kids. Much thanks to those who have generously supported the effort, and we are close to raising enough funds to purchase coats for our Headstart children. Sadly, I regret to inform the membership that despite an award letter and congratulatory email from Running Strong, we are not receiving the 202 pairs of winter boots they initially awarded after miscalculating their inventory. Certainly we will apply for boots next funding year and an application was submitted for dental kits, soap, and running shoes for this spring.

For those youth ages 14-16, the time to apply to be a Washington State Page for the House or Senate is now! Go to https://app.leg.wa.gov/PageApplication/ to apply. A parent or guardian must give permission, a recommendation from a teacher and principal is necessary, and you cannot be 17 when performing the page experience in Olympia. The experience occurs for about 5-6 days, with the first session staring January 14-20, 2019, and the last session occurring April 22-28, 2019. This would be incredibly valuable for a young person with exposure to the state legislative process. You can request a scholarship through the Gina Grant Bull Memorial Legislative Page Scholarship Program to offset the cost of travel and housing. Additional information is available on the link above, and the application is due at least one month before the scheduled experience.

In a recent tribune reviewing 2018, a summary of ethics charges is included. Our newspaper staff do an excellent job getting the paper out on a much more regular basis that what was provided historically and raising issues impacting our membership here locally as well as all over the globe. Nevertheless, taking a moment to ponder the role of ethics proceedings in recent times causes concern about the kind of legacy our leadership is creating and whether the process has simply become a means to an end for the political majority to eliminate resistance. A couple of months ago, I was skeptical when a much more seasoned CBC stated that the membership should determine whether a Council person’s actions are appropriate at election time. CBC needs to be held accountable, but after additional consideration perhaps elections are indeed best suited for making our leaders accountable. Otherwise, power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely. As stated by Lord Acton: “It is bad to be oppressed by a minority, but it is worse to be oppressed by a majority.”

Our elders, women, children, and the weak are sacred. Take care of yourself and your loved ones. If you observe abuse or harm to another, have the strength and compassion to intervene or report it. I pray our leaders will be strong, but also compassionate, respectful and advocates for vulnerable populations, and that 2019 will bring positive experiences and memories for our tribal members, families, and communities.

Lim Limt,

Councilwoman Andrea George

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