The Cheyenne River Sioux Tribal Council voted unanimously on Wednesday to dis-enroll and banish for life anyone convicted of dealing, making or trafficking methamphetamine.

Remi Bald Eagle, intergovernmental affairs coordinator, said the resolution is part of a comprehensive plan to address the tribe’s growing meth problem.

“If you are a user we want to get you help, if you are a trafficker we want to get you out,” Bald Eagle said. “We want to make that message as strong as possible.”

According to a release from the tribe, part of the resolution says:

Methamphetamine has caused an increase in murder, suicides, assaults, burglary, vandalism, child abuse, child neglect, among many other injustices. The Cheyenne River Sioux Tribal Council recognizes this epidemic … which will not be tolerated to affect our families.”

Tribal Chairman Harold Frazier said the resolution will send a message to those who are thinking about bringing meth to Cheyenne River.

In South Dakota, small-batch mobile meth manufacturing has made the drug more available in the state’s less-populated areas.

Meth-related arrests increased nearly 50 percent from 10 years ago in rural counties, according to the attorney general’s office. The amount of meth seized also more than doubled in rural counties.

South Dakota Attorney General Marty Jackley applauded the reservation’s strong stance against meth. He said he looks forward to continuing to work with the Cheyenne Sioux Tribe and other reservations in the state to combat the drug.

“I think it obviously sends a strong message about the concern that meth is causing not just across the nation, but in South Dakota and its reservations,” Jackley said.

The Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe is located in Ziebach County in western South Dakota.

The county’s sheriff, Gary Cudmore, spent seven years working as a tribal officer before moving into the sheriff’s office.

Cudmore said the tribe’s resolution was the first of a much-needed series of steps toward combating meth in the area. His only hope is that the tribe stands by their resolution and sees it through.

“It’s a long time coming,” Cudmore said. “They needed to do something because it’s getting out of hand. It’s no secret what will happen if you get caught — everyone knows it now.”

http://www.argusleader.com/story/news/crime/2015/07/10/tribe-banish-life-trafficking-meth/29964045/

  1. KC says:

    Wow, what a great move in the right direction. That is awesome that their community cares enough about its people to draw a hard line defining acceptable behavior and help get people better if they want it while protecting themselves against those who don’t. I wish neighborhoods and small towns would jump on board and do the same thing. Social policing can be very effective.