‘Remember the Indians’
In an interview with Indian Country before she left office, Obama Interior Secretary Sally Jewell left a piece of advice she had been given.
“I had no real understanding of the importance of self-governance and self-determination and the trust and treaty rights that are a fundamental obligation of the U.S. government,” Jewell said, describing her arrival in D.C. But she said an Interior official named Kevin Washburn gave her some advice which she said would be useful to the Trump administration:
“He said, ‘Sally, it’s as simple as this: Don’t forget the Indians.’ It’s not simple, but it’s really important, and it’s a simple phrase that reminded me through the course of my tenure that my job is complicated, the federal government is complicated—there are many different moving parts—but if you just remember our obligations to tribal nations, those trust and treaty obligations and the importance of self-governance and self-determination, it will pop into your mind in every decision you make. Whether it is the permitting of a project on federal public land, or cajoling your colleagues at the Department of Education to not forget the Indians when it comes to a budget line item that deals with, say, early childhood education or some other education grant program, or making the Department of Transportation aware of how much Indian country relies on their funding and support for roads on reservations that are some of the worst in the country.”
Nevada has 19 reservations where Washoe, Paiute, Goshute and Shoshone reside.