State of Emergency: Ice Storms Knock Out Indigenous Infrastructure in South Dakota

 
It has been a devastating winter for weather-related disasters. While there has been a lot of information about (and vital response to) the situation in Haiti, there's another emergency closer to home, one which calls for solidarity with the indigenous people of South Dakota and surrounding areas.

The past weekend's ice storms brought down 2,000 to 3,000 utility poles on the Cheyenne River Sioux Indian Reservation in South Dakota, knocking out an already shaky resource infrastructure.  Crews are working feverishly, but electricity may be out for up to 30 days in some areas. With no electricity, no heat, no running water, and a wind chill below zero the situation is growing more difficult. The bulk of those most affected by the storm are located on reservations in Pine Ridge, Standing Rock, Eagle Butte and others. This is an urgent state of emergency.

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