Sep 11/95: March for Haudenosaunee Women's Rights


- from the Native-L archives

Date: Mon, 11 Sep 1995 07:57:13 EST

We would like to invite you to participate in a March for Haudenosaunee Women's Rights to be held in front of the James M. Hanley Federal Building located at 100 S. Clinton St., Syracuse N. Y. on September 14, 1995 from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm. This location was chosen for the march because the United States Federal government, specifically the Department of Interior, Bureau of Indian Affairs, is reviewing an incorporation document that will further endanger the next Seven Generations for every member of the Haudenosaunee, Six Nations Iroquois Confederacy.

One role of Haudenosaunee Women in our traditional native society is, as bearers of life, to assure that a sustainable environment exists for the next Seven Generations. The Oneida Nation in New York has removed the role of Haudenosaunee women in their decision making process, even though the traditional Oneida government is a matrilineal system. It appears that a few men have been and are continuing to make decisions for the Oneida Nation ignoring the rights of women in our native society. Haudenosaunee women have no voice in decision making nation meetings, all of their concerns and input must be approved of by a designated spokesman. If the spokesman does not wish to voice an issue the women have no recourse. If the women speak out directly in meetings they risk removal by the Oneida Nation Police Force. Please be aware that the majority of the Oneida Nation members know nothing about a proposed incorporation document that will endanger their lands, moneys and rights of the Oneida people.

We are inviting all women to participate in the March for Haudenosaunee Women's Rights. Haudenosaunee women have a strong role in their government. The Haudenosaunee women have the ability to raise Chiefs and remove them if they are not following the direction of the people. The Haudenosaunee women hold the title of the land. The children of the Haudenosaunee follow their mother's clan.

Native women have greatly influenced the Women's Rights Movement. The role of the non-native women was much different before contact with native women many years ago. The Haudenosaunee leaders counseled the Founding Fathers of this country years ago about the role of women in the native society. The Founding Fathers adopted the structure of the Haudenosaunee government but left the role of women out of it.

Come to the march and show your support. We appreciate your help in regaining the voice and respect of our Oneida women. For more information contact Lorna at (315) 699-4120 or John at (315) 475-9821.

Back to SIS