Episcopal Life Online reports that the Episcopal Public Policy Network (EPPN) is calling on Episcopalians to contact their United States Senators and urge them to support the Indian Health Care Improvement Act Amendments of 2007 (Senate Bill 1200) when it comes to the floor this week.
"Indigenous people are suffering and we are your neighbors," Janine Tinsley-Roe, the Episcopal Church's national missioner for Native American Ministries, said in an EPPN alert, which is emailed to more than 21,000 Episcopalians and religious advocates. "We live and love every bit of this country but have been historically neglected by our 'caregivers' on the local, state and especially federal levels. We need our elected officials to advocate for us and to ensure Indigenous people the resources we need to thrive. The time for justice in our health-care crisis is now."
The EPPN alert noted that Native American infant mortality is 150% greater for Indians than for Caucasian infants. Indigenous people are 650% more likely to die from tuberculosis and 318% more likely to die from diabetes compared with other groups.
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