Gagwe:gö sgë:nö’, agajëgwah gagwe:göh jöhiyoa:je’,
I hope everyone was able to get out and enjoy the Seneca Fall Festival. It felt good to be able to walk around and see people for a brief conversation. We asked everyone to mask up, sanitize and social distance to keep the spread of COVID down. As you can see from our numbers we continue to see our positive cases rise on both Territories. It is going to take each and everyone to do their part in slowing down the progression of this virus.
Although we are seeing breakthrough cases of those who have been vaccinated, symptoms should be milder. The CDC and other health organizations predicted that break through cases would still occur and be spread the same way. This is why it is as important to continue to follow COVID – 19 protocol to protect you and your family. The best defense against the virus is to get your COVID vaccine.
The data shows our lowest vaccination rate is among people under 40 years old. Please, for the safety of the community, get your vaccination as soon as possible. As always, please contact the Seneca Nation Health System for vaccination information or complete the online form at SenecaHealth.org/vaccine to schedule an appointment.
The Nation has started pop up Bluestone testing again on a weekly basis. Starting September 16th testing will be held every Thursday through October 14th at both Allegany and Cattaraugus Fire halls from 1pm -5pm Testing helps keep the community informed of their health status and helps to keep the virus isolated when infected. If you are tested you must remain in quarantine until you receive your results. We will also have a PPE distribution on Thursday, September 30th at the CCC and ACC.
I’d like to share a few sentiments I gave during the recent 911 remembrance at Iroquois Post 1587. “For those who are old enough to remember this day, will always remember where we were when we first heard about what was happening. The images are ingrained in our minds and forever stamped on our national consciousness.” We will understand that our world changed forever on this day. We will remember the fireman, police officers and first responders who unselfishly ran into burning buildings to help save others. Tragically, many lost their own lives. We are thankful to our brave Native warriors who answered the call to serve in Iraq, Afghanistan and other dangerous locations around the world. They have fought for our freedom on a national level and for our Indigenous communities. We remember and honor those who paid the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom. We are grateful.
Lastly, on September 17th we recognized Ogwe’o:weh Day. This is a day we celebrate and reflect on the contributions our ancestors have made to the fabric of the United States. Our vibrant culture, our people and our perseverance through many endless challenges deserve recognition and respect. We set this day aside to celebrate and reflect on our ancestors sacrifices, we should do this every day. We all will be ancestors someday, let’s continue to make selfless decisions, continue to preserve our sovereignty and keep our world safe.
Let’s continue to stay safe, and stay strong,
Dah ne’ho dih ae’,