Consultation with USDA to Address School Lunch Program Funding for Tribal Schools

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TITLE: Consultation with USDA to Address School Lunch Program Funding for
Tribal Schools

WHEREAS, we, the members of the National Congress of American Indians of the United States, invoking the divine blessing of the Creator upon our efforts and purposes, in order to preserve for ourselves and our descendants the inherent sovereign rights of our Indian nations, rights secured under Indian treaties and agreements with the United States, and all other rights and benefits to which we are entitled under the laws and Constitution of the United States and the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, to enlighten the public toward a better understanding of the Indian people, to preserve Indian cultural values, and otherwise promote the health, safety and welfare of the Indian people, do hereby establish and submit the following resolution; and

WHEREAS, the National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) was established in 1944 and is the oldest and largest national organization of American Indian and Alaska Native tribal governments; and

WHEREAS, the Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) of the USDA administers the program at the federal level and at the state level, the school lunch program is administered by state agencies which operate the program through agreements with tribal schools; and

WHEREAS, this funding is not adequate to fund the costs to pay for staff in food service and to purchase food; and

WHEREAS, tribal schools have been using ISEP funds to maintain the food service responsibilities in salaries for cooks and purchasing food; and

WHEREAS, continued financial poverty and overcrowded homes makes for children who are hungry, and school lunch may be the only meal they will have for the day.

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that the National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) requests consultation be set by USDA to address the formula for funding to include poverty, unemployment, isolation, and multiple families sharing a home and requests full funding for the food service program including food service staff; and access to traditional food items; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that this resolution shall be the policy of NCAI until it is withdrawn or modified by subsequent resolution.


The foregoing resolution was adopted by the General Assembly at the 2018 Midyear Session of the National Congress of American Indians, held at the Marriott Kansas City Downtown, June 3-6, 2018, with a quorum present.

Jefferson Keel, President

Juana Majel Dixon, Recording Secretary