Resolution to recognize contributions of Native American women introduced in Congress

Noel Lyn Smith
Farmington Daily Times
Deb Haaland

FARMINGTON — A resolution to recognize the heritage, culture and contributions of Native American women has been introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives.

U.S. Reps. Deb Haaland, D-N.M., and Sharice Davids, D-Kan., introduced the proposal this week to honor Native American, Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian women as part of Women's History Month.

March has been recognized as Women's History Month since 1987. It honors and celebrates the struggles and achievements of women throughout the history of the United States, according to the Library of Congress.

The resolution also highlights challenges and issues Native American women face in communities, including wage inequality and violence.

It is the first time a resolution recognizing Native women has been introduced in the House, according to a joint press release from Haaland, Davids and Rep. Tom Cole, R-Oklahoma., who is a co-sponsor.

"Women's History Month is all about recognizing the contributions women have made to this country while recommitting ourselves to fight for equality. My resolution honors the stories and contributions of Native American women which are often left out of the conversation," Haaland said in the release.

Rep. Sharice Davids

Davids said in the release she is proud to partner with Haaland to make sure Native American women are remembered for their contributions and to advocate for Native American women.

Haaland and Davids are the first Native American women elected to Congress.

The five-page resolution identifies 13 Native American, Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian women who have contributed to science, civil rights, government, medicine, arts, culture and language preservation and the military.

Three of the women are from tribes in the Southwest – Floy Agnes Lee, Santa Clara Pueblo, worked on the Manhattan Project; Diane Humetewa, Hopi Tribe, is the first Native American woman to serve as a federal judge; and Esther Martinez, Ohkay Owingeh Pueblo, was a linguist known for her commitment to preserving the Tewa language.

Noel Lyn Smith covers the Navajo Nation for The Daily Times. She can be reached at 505-564-4636 or by email at