Give Native American Reservations Access to COVID-19 Data

Give Native American Reservations Access to COVID-19 Data

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Petition to
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention CDC and

Why this petition matters

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“If you can’t measure [the coronavirus,] you can’t manage it... It’s another chronic failing of what Indian people experience across the health system. We know it’s happening across the country.” - Stacey Bohlen, executive director of the National Indian Health Board.

Coronavirus has been disproportionately affecting Native American communities, and the CDC refuses all requests for data by their epidemiology centers. Tribal epidemiology centers were originally intended to work with federal agencies in order to coordinate public health efforts with U.S. states. By denying them access to crucial data, the CDC is hindering indigenous communities' abilities to track and manage coronavirus and leaving them even more vulnerable than they already are to the virus.

Abigail Echo-Hawk, director of the Urban Indian Health Institute (UIHI) which is the main epidemiology/health tracking center for Native Americans living off of reservations, reports that the CDC has repeatedly rejected her and other centers' requests for information on the basis that the data, freely distributed to state health departments, is non-public. Additionally, the CDC made an effort to explain to her and her team what epidemiology is during a call, further exemplifying their lack of respect for tribal communities. 

Without this data, it is extremely difficult for Native American epidemiology centers to track COVID-19 and figure out why natives are dying at significantly higher rates than other ethnic groups.

Please help us raise awareness of this problem and protect Native American Nations from further destruction.


6,821 have signed. Let’s get to 7,500!