Skip navigation
Timeline / Renewing Native Ways / 1990: Congress told Alaska Natives are a population at risk

1990: Congress told Alaska Natives are a population at risk

The Alaska Native Commission delivers a final report to Congress about the situation of Alaska Natives. In the richest state in the nation, 86,000 U.S. citizens are living in “economic deprivation and social impairment at sometimes incomprehensible rates.”

“Whatever words are chosen to depict the situation of Alaska’s Native people, there can be little doubt that an entire population is at risk. At risk of becoming permanently imprisoned in America’s underclass, mired in both the physical and spiritual poverty that accompany such social standing. At risk of leading lives, generation to generation, characterized by violence, alcohol abuse, and cycles of personal and social destruction. At risk of losing, irretrievably, cultural strengths and attributes essential for the building of a new and workable social and economic order. And at risk, inevitably, of permanently losing the capacity to self-govern—the capacity to make considered and appropriate decisions about how life in Native communities should be lived.” —The Alaska Native Commission

Epidemics, Federal-Tribal Relations
Arctic, Northwest Coast, Subarctic