BURNEY, CA – On March 29th, 2012 The Pit River Tribe unanimously affirmed the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Pit River Tribe is now the first tribe within the State of California to affirm the declaration and the first since the United States affirmed its support of the declaration. Pit River Tribe is the third tribe in the United States to officially affirm the declaration after Gila River of Arizona in 2008 and Seminole Nation of Oklahoma in 2010. In preparation for Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, Mr. James Anaya’s visit to examine the human rights situation of indigenous peoples in the country from 23 April to 4 May 2012.
As noted in the resolution, The Pit River Tribe affirms its inherent right to self-determination over its tribal lands and traditional ancestral territories according to Docket 347 Adopted July 15, 1959 and the full recognition and effective implementation of the rights affirmed in the Declaration will enhance harmonious and cooperation relations between the Pit River Tribe and the United States Government.
The United Nations adopted the Declaration in 2007, with 144 of 192 member nations casting affirmative votes. A handful of nations abstained from the final vote, a handful had absentee delegates, but only four voted against the Declaration: Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the United States. All four have now reversed their position with the United States affirming its support of the declaration on December 16th, 2010.