March 08, 2008

Tribal IDs questioned

New snag in Indian travel

Lack of traditional IDs might mean more airport hassleRon His Horse Is Thunder lives where his ancestors have lived for thousands of years, and the U.S. Interior Department keeps records of his family members that go back at least 100 years.

But he says that doesn't stop government security screeners from challenging his credentials whenever he attempts to board an airplane or enter a government building using his tribal identification card instead of a state-issued driver's license.

Indian tribes are sovereign entities and consider their ID cards equal to those issued by other governments.

Since the 9-11 terrorist attacks, however, Native Americans have found it increasingly difficult to use tribal cards to prove their identity, and it's about to get more difficult.

1 comment:

writerfella said...

Writerfella here --
How interesting, except that the article writer has many of the facts skewed. First, Oklahoma is one of 14 states that are suing the Homeland Security Department over requirements for federally-approved state drivers' license formats. Past May, Oklahoma drivers' licenses and state ID cards (and those of the 13 other states) will be refused by air travel screeners. However, the Kiowa Tribe of Oklahoma on its own has begun to issue tribal ID cards that conform to the USHSA requirements and writerfella received his new card two weeks ago. Thus writerfella is assured that his tribal ID is acceptable for air travel whereas his Oklahoma ID is not...
All Best
Russ Bates