On March 23, 2018, a State of Emergency was declared for the Ponca Language.
From Tribal Chairman Larry Wright Jr.:
“The 1960’s termination of the Ponca Tribe of Nebraska had catastrophic affects on every aspect of our nation. Lost was our sense of community, history, culture, traditions and programs our people depended upon. Since the restoration of tribe in 1990, our nation has and continues to grow in population, employment, housing, healthcare, programs and services. We have come a long way and have much to be proud of. We also still have much to accomplish. One area that has not had the attention or success is our culture–specifically our language. The Ponca Nation continues to lose the few remaining fluent speakers it has. Without our language, we lose our culture, our traditions, our songs–we lose who we are as a people. It is imperative that this not continue. To that end, I am issuing a Declaration of a State of Emergency as it pertains to the loss of our language. I call on all of us to come together as a people to work to identify ideas, funding, programs so that we may reverse the course of the loss of our language. We owe it to our ancestors, our elders, our youth, to those not born yet–We Owe It To Each Other!”
To view the full text of the Declaration of a State of Emergency, Click Here.