1962 March 5

Native-American Tribes Plan Rights Campaign


The National Congress of American Indians on this day announced Operation Constitution, an attack on discrimination against Native-Americans. The issues to be addressed included the lack of adequate law enforcement and police brutality on Indian reservations, discrimination in state welfare programs and admissions to state hospitals, among others. Legal support would be provided in test cases. Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy reportedly pledged “full cooperation” with the program. Meanwhile, Senator Sam J. Ervin (D– North Carolina) called for his Judiciary Subcommittee to undertake the first such Congressional investigation into “this most important and all-too-long-neglected area of the law.”

Learn more at the Native American Rights Fund: http://www.narf.org/

Read: George Castile, To Show Heart: Native American Self-Determination and Federal Indian Policy, 1960–1975 (1998)

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