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ONEIDA ISSUES


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ONEIDAS FOR DEMOCRACY  


Contact or to send donations:
Onyota'a:ka Oneidas for Democracy, a non-profit organization
PO Box 450
Oneida, New York 13421  



To View a list of Video's about the Oneida and this situation visit

Northeast Chapter of the American Indian Movement.  


After a nice warm summer last year, Danielle Patterson started up her
heater last November and found the furnace was needing repair or
replacement.  Knowing that she did not have the money to purchase a
furnace or repair the old one, Danielle applied to the HEAP (Heating
Emergency Application Program) who immediately sent out a qualified
investigating inspector who stated that her home was "at and above
code".    

Art Pierce, the former dog catcher for the area and now the non-
trained  'building inspector" for Ray Halbritter and other named
defendants in a current civil liberties suit, however, was under
orders to prevent the plaintiffs from doing any work on their
homes.   Art Pierce found out about Danielle's furnace the same day
the State trained inspector gave her the nod and awarded her the
opportunity for a FREE new furnace.   Art Pierce then brought his own
non-trained inspectors to Danielle's home and "failed" her home
because the furnace did not work.  

Mr. Pierce kept armed police at the only entrance to the front of the
Reservation to search any vehicle entering the reservation in an

effort to stop delivery of any furnace from going in.   Art Pierce
also threatened to use outside agencies to have Danielle's children
removed from her custody; because she did not have an operating
furnace; while at the same time preventing her from having a new
furnace installed in her home.  

Vicky Shenandoah and her family recently purchased a newer mobile
home unit to replace the one they currently have.   The day scheduled
for arrival to her property on the reservation, she received a notice
that she had not followed procedure (none of the current residents
are kept aware of the ordinances that are seemingly created to fit
the needs of whatever circumstance comes up); to bring her new home
onto the reservation.  She was given 48 hours to rid herself of same
mobile home; or Mr. Pierce and his private army of armed police force
would show up with the necessary equipment to demolish the new
home.    Why would a peaceful inspection need a SWAT team of armed
police? Why are these people not given copies of the so-called Zoning

ordinances, Beautification ordinances, Building and Health Code
ordinances under which their homes are being inspected and judged for
habitability? Why are they being denied the right to make repairs, do
normal maintenance on their properties, whereby they are kept in good
condition?  

Art Pierce and the other defendants, including the hired judges for
the Tribal Court, seized Danielle this October 18 and drove her 7
hours away to have her imprisoned at a Pennsylvania State Prison.  
They arrested, handcuffed (in front of her children) and had her
imprisoned, based upon criminal charges they themselves had brought
against Danielle in their controlled Tribal Court.  Because these
people claim to be acting under a sovereign Nation, the State of
Pennsylvania accepted Danielle as their prisoner and put in the State
Prison.  Danielle was treated like any other prisoner - subjected to
the humiliating strip and body cavity search - isolated from
contacting her three minor children and because the defendants
arranged to do this on Friday, she had no contact with the outer
world or her family and attorney; people did not know where she was

until Monday morning.   On Monday, the defendants used the 'Casino'
jet to fly her back to 'stand trial' before the defendants; where
they threatened to return her to prison (this time even further, like
North Carolina) for an indefinite period, unless she agreed to plead
guilty and gave permission for the defendants to demolish her home.  
Danielle had no choice.  These armed defendants would keep bouncing
her from state prison to prison; separate from her three minor
children or allow them to destroy the only home that her children
have ever known; in order to be with them.

Danielle Patterson and her children are now (technically speaking)
homeless, because their home has been demolished.  At present, they
are living at an undisclosed site.   Using the Casino profits to
provide free legal service the same people who created Danielle's'
homelessness; have now engaged in a suit to help her ex-husband take
the children from her;  USING THE VERY HOMELESSNESS that the

defendants themselves caused; as the reason necessitating this action
to protect the children and provide for them in a proper manner.  
(Technically homeless, because Danielle does not own or rent the
place they are living in, at the present moment.) Who created this
situation?  Not Danielle or her children, that is for sure.

Danielle and her children, as well as the other plaintiffs, are being
persecuted because of their religious beliefs and refusal to abandon
the Traditional beliefs and practices of the Oneida people and the
Haudensaunee Confederacy.



These Oneida may have to seek asylum with the US Government; now
becomes a reality because the defendants are making them homeless
refugees; forcibly driving from their homeland, the sovereign 32-acre
Territory where they have lived some since the 1960's.  The
defendants have also removed the "voice" of the listed plaintiff's;

from all "tribal' functions so that the plaintiffs cannot even speak
at hearings where these secret ordinances are adopted. Their
defendants also hired the 'judges' acting as the tribal court.
Plaintiffs as a result, have had to invoke the Indian Civil Liberties
Act under the case of Poodry.  


The defendants have never lived on the land listed in the civil
liberties suit.  The defendants have and are engaging in creating
laws, specifically designed to oust these traditional Oneida
(plaintiffs) because they are maintaining and keeping their
spiritual, religious, governmental, societal and language alive. The
plaintiffs' dedication to maintaining their Traditional way of life
is put under further tension and stress, by the refusal of the
defendants to allow them to maintain and live in their homes, in a
peaceful manner.  When the plaintiff's speak out in any fashion, they
are considered and labeled as dissidents.  They continuously live
with the very real threat of being arrested and imprisoned, as the

defendants did to Danielle.

They have been cast aside, refused admittance to the tribal buildings
under threat of arrest, incarceration and imprisonment, the places
they need to be.  They have had their jobs taken away, their funds
cut off.  The Wolf Clan Mother, has been publicly disrespected and
abused.  Is this the way of the people?     Or is this the way of the
Casino money?

For more information on this story, please contact:


Diane Schenandoah                    315-363-1655 or
Vicky Halsey                              315-361-5301.
www.oneidasfordemocracy.org

CONTACT INFORMATION

The Honorable Hilary Rodham Clinton
United States Senate
476 Russell Senate Office Building

Washington, DC 20510
Phone: (202) 224-4451
General Fax: (202) 228-0282


The Honorable Charles Schumer
United States Senate
313 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20510-3201
Phone: 202-224-6542
Fax: 202-228-3027


Oneida Indian Nation of New York

New York Liaison Office
Ray Halbritter
P.O. Box 1, West Road
Oneida, NY 13421