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Category Archives: In The News

This information posts to the main posting page (blog) for the website called “In The News”. This information automatically posts to the Sac and Fox Tribe of the Mississippi in Iowa Facebook page (@MeskwakiNation).

Graduation Powwow Postponed

The 2020 Meskwaki Graduation Committee and Higher Education Department have agreed to postpone this year’s event rescheduling it to be held during Annual Powwow.   Look for more information to come at a later date.  Thank you for your understanding.  Stay home and stay safe!

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April MNT Available

Please read the April Meskwaki Nation Times available now.

It includes the latest information regarding this month’s programming and recaps some of the events that occurred in our community over the last month.

As we shelter in place, may we remember and show our loved ones how much we care by staying home and taking care of ourselves.

Blessings and good wishes sent your way while we all stay home and stay safe!


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Tribal Entities Closed until April 20th

Tribal Council met in special session today and determined that the Shelter In Place Declaration will stay.  All Tribal entities will remain closed until Monday, April 20th. The council will review this as more information and details come into place as to the extent of the spread of the corona virus both on the settlement and in the state. Staff will continue to be paid.


From Health Director Rudy Papakee:

As of March 31, there are 11 positive cases within Tama County. This number will continue to increase as more testing becomes available. The good news is that all of the Natives who tested positive to date, are recovering. While Iowa has not peaked with cases across the state, the effects of closures and social distancing has still yet to be felt. However, with symptoms of COVID-19 taking 2 – 14 days to manifest, from a public health standpoint we are hoping to start seeing the results of prevention efforts paying off over the next couple of weeks.

These prevention efforts are still needed from all of you reading this. Continue social distancing, do not visit others in their home, don’t allow people into your home, practice good cough and sneeze etiquette, and by all means, stay home if you are sick. I know this may sound like a broken record but with no vaccine or a cure for the disease, these steps are necessary to ensure we minimize those infected. With no timeline projected, your efforts will be rewarded when life can return to normal.

Information changes daily on the virus and while there is no cure, I am sure some of you have read or even heard from the President that hydroxycholorquine (HCQ) and azithromycin are a potential cure. The FDA recently announced the emergency use of the drugs even though this is an unproven treatment. Patrick Bolte, Meskwaki Chief Pharmacist, in an email stated, “ Limited data showing either drug works and both are on national shortage. Grinnell was told not to use azithromycin because it was not showing efficacy (it shouldn’t because COVID is a virus and azithromycin doesn’t treat viruses). HCQ is restricted to admitted patients that 1) have a +CT scan, +fever and require oxygen or 2) +COVID test, +fever and require oxygen.” Dr. Frost, Meskwaki Medical Director, in a follow up email stated, “ I have not received any supporting memos from CDC or WHO regarding these treatments in the outpatient setting.” With this information the Meskwaki Clinic will not be prescribing either medication for anyone who tests positive within our facility. If additional information comes forward that supports the use, the Clinic will reevaluate their protocols.

Finally, I want to thank all of you who continue to abide by the shelter in place initiative and those following the social distancing protocols. I know this isn’t easy as we are a social group already. But we as a community have the ability to stop the virus from infecting others but we must remain diligent in our daily activities.

Real time updates are provided through Facebook on both the SETT and KSETT pages and on our website at www.meskwaki.org. Please watch for updates as they become available.

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Health Clinic Updates 3.30.20

There are now currently 10 confirmed cases in Tama County (see chart below for state information as of today). 7 of those belong to Natives of, and around the community. We have many more presumed positives due to direct exposure or people showing some but not all of the symptoms. With direct exposure (you had direct contact someone who tested positive) or even a presumed positive, the recommendations are still the same: STAY HOME, NO VISITORS, TRY TO ISOLATE FROM THOSE LIVING IN THE HOME IF POSSIBLE.
I have received many messages and calls throughout this duration. I am glad people are asking before assuming an answer. I would like to touch base on the testing protocols of the Health Clinic. We cannot test everyone. We have limited tests available. 12 tests available as of today. Our tests are sent to Lab Corp where the results are taking 10 – 14 days to be returned. By the time the results come back, most people are on the mend and feeling better. Again, with or without testing, recommendations above still apply. We are currently evaluating protocols for use of a new lab that would provide results in 2 days. Will provide updates if/when this becomes available.
While cases are beginning to spike in Iowa, one thing to remember as that due to the onset of symptoms, those who are sick are a most likely a result from many businesses still being open 2 weeks ago. The state and the Tribe took steps beginning on March 18 by closing up. With symptoms showing up from 2 – 14 days, it is safe to say the virus was obtained beyond the boundaries of the Settlement which resulted in recent sicknesses. Some with minor symptoms while others have ended up in the hospital. These reasons are some of the logic behind the shelter in place orders. No other community except ours has proclaimed such measures. It is business as usual for everywhere else in the state. This is why it is so important for people to stay home except for essential needs, especially if they feel any symptoms. If we are to stop the spread amongst ourselves, we have to quit visiting people and maintain social distancing. Quit babysitting for people who are not working, quit visiting friends and family. If it is not your place of residence, stay out of it.
There is a Tribal Council meeting scheduled for 03.31.20 at 4pm via phone call. I am going to make the recommendation to Tribal Council for Tribal Operations to remain closed for the same duration as the school and Casino with shelter in place orders remaining active. With no clear indication if Governor Reynolds will continue the closures beyond the 17th, I believe this will provide the Tribe adequate time to make future decisions as it pertains to Tribal business.
Any questions, please don’t hesitate to ask.
~ Rudy Papakee, Health Services Director
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April Per Cap Distribution

Attention Tribal Members: April’s per cap will be mailed out to anyone receiving a paper check on April 8th. Due to the COVID-19 emergency declaration, checks will NOT be available for pick up at the Tribal Center.

**Please ensure that a current address is on file with the Finance Office. If you need to up-date your address before then, please call the Tribal Center at (641) 484-4678.

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Emergency Declaration From Tribal Council

Due to the reported worldwide outbreak of thousands of cases of Novel Coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19), multiple cases confirmed in Iowa, and positive tests of community transmission on the Meskwaki Settlement, the Meskwaki Tribal Council has declared an Emergency Declaration.

Tribal Council hereby determines and directs that all individuals residing on the Settlement shall shelter in place and shall not leave their homes unless going to and from grocery stores, pharmacies, or the Meskwaki Health Clinic effective March 21, 2020; and that all social, community, recreational, leisure, and sporting gatherings and events of more than 10 people are hereby prohibited at all locations and venues on the Meskwaki Settlement; and close the Meskwaki Settlement to outside visitors.

Please see Resolution 11-2020 in its entirety adopted on March 21, 2020 for complete details.

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Meskwaki Health Clinic Patient Receives Positive COVID-19 Test

Attention Meskwaki Community:
The Meskwaki Health Clinic has received a positive test result for COVID-19. The individual does not reside on the Settlement but is an employee of the Health Clinic. Direct exposure to the public was limited to 4 patients. The Clinic already notified the individuals who came into direct contact with the employee. If you did not receive a call this morning, you were NOT exposed. Patients have been advised to self-quarantine for 14 days.
Please know you do NOT need to be tested unless you had direct contact with someone who has tested positive AND have symptoms (fever, cough, difficulty breathing). Treatment is based on your symptoms and testing will not change your medical treatment.
The Health Clinic will continue to monitor and report to the community as any new information becomes available.
Please continue to practice social distancing, coughing and sneezing etiquette, and good hand washing. Avoid visiting friends and family. Please check on others through telephone, text, or social media.
Please look to here for future updates.
Thank you,
Rudy Papakee
Health Director
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Update: Meskwaki, Inc. Closure Announcement

In light of the global pandemic caused by the coronavirus COVID-19 and continued recommendations as to precautionary measures to be taken to limit the spread of the virus, it has been decided that closure of Meskwaki, Inc. businesses will begin March 18, 2020, until March 27, 2020.

The closure does not include the Travel Plaza, Meskwaki Fuels, and other essential personnel needed to complete accounting and warehouse responsibilities. Reassessment of closure will take place on March 25, 2020, to determine if it is necessary to continue closure.


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Tribal Council Meeting to be held March 31, 2020

Tribal Council has called a meeting to be held on Tuesday, March 31, 2020 at 5:00 pm in the Tribal Chambers.  (Changed from March 25th.)

Please note: Attendance is limited to Tribal Council Members and essential staff due to the coronavirus.

*Meetings are held on a bi-weekly basis.

**Meeting dates/times are subject to change at the discretion of the Tribal Chair.

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Update: Meskwaki, Inc. to Remain Open

Please read the following message from Mr Robert Bills regarding Meskwaki, Inc.:

“We will remain open; however, as a precautionary measure, Meskwaki, Inc. is temporarily closing its doors to walk-in visitors. If you wish to speak with one of our staff members, please call or email them directly. If you require further assistance, please call the front desk at (641)484-2638. We appreciate your cooperation during this time.”


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