Tribes Look Forward To A New Model For Collaborative Management Of Ancestral Lands


The Bears Ears Inter-Tribal Coalition (BEITC), comprised of delegates from the Hopi Tribe, Navajo Nation, Ute Indian Tribe, Ute Mountain Ute Tribe and the Zuni Tribe, issued a statement today in response to President Biden’s upcoming announcement that the boundaries of Bears Ears National Monument will be restored.

By taking this action, President Biden will be recognizing the deep and enduring ancestral and cultural connections that Tribes have to this landscape and taking a step toward honoring his commitment to Indigenous People by acknowledging their original place in this country that is now our shared home.

The Bears Ears Intertribal Coalition looks forward to the President’s continued leadership in ensuring that a new model of collaborative management between the Tribes, state and federal land agencies is immediately put into action and that a comprehensive Land Management Plan can be developed for the greater Bears Ears landscape. In this new model, the traditional knowledge and place-based conservation strategies of Tribal communities will play a significant role in shaping efforts to conserve and plan a resilient future for this landscape that we all hold dear.

“Thank you President Biden for restoring Bears Ears National Monument to its original vision of protection by incorporating Antiquities Laws to dissuade vandalism and desecrations of our ancestral artifacts and homeland. ”

– Hank Stevens, Representative for the Navajo Nation and BEITC Co-Chair

“President Biden did the right thing restoring the Bears Ears National Monument. For us the Monument never went away. We will always return to these lands to manage and care for our sacred sites, waters and medicines. The Monument represents a historic opportunity for the federal government to learn and incorporate our tribal land management practices.  Practices that we developed over centuries and are needed more now than ever. President Biden was right to reinforce the action taken by President Obama almost five years ago. We battled for this Monument because it matters.”

– Chairman Shaun Chapoose, Ute Indian Tribe Business Committee and BEITC member

“Thank you, President Biden and Vice President Harris for upholding your commitment to restore Honmuru (the Bears Ears monument), which is the birthplace of many Hopi and other Native peoples. Though this action, the history of our people, our culture, and religion will be preserved for future generations.”

– Clark W. Tenakhongva, Vice Chairman of the Hopi Tribe and BEITC Co-Chair.

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Download PDF: BEITC Restoration Press Release

This statement represents the joint views of the five Tribes making up the Coalition. Each Tribe, acting as sovereign nations, may also offer independent comments.