by Christine Trudeau
First tested on May 19, prominent Native American rights advocate Suzan Harjo says she’s tested positive for Covid-19Suzan Harjo has recently tested again and came up positive a second time for the coronavirus. Harjo is currently making her way through her second round of quarantine.
“I have been reading and writing and talking to people and working; you just continue your life,” Harjo said. “You continue your life with more care for others and prioritize your time.”
So far, Harjo says she’s remained asymptomatic. Reflecting on the toll the COVID-19 pandemic has had, Harjo says she applauds the way tribes have come together to act fast in early months to protect their citizens, and proud of their continued assertion of tribal sovereignty in maintaining closures and checkpoints even as various states begin to open up.
“If we work as nations, if we work as peoples together that’s what propels us through something that should annihilate us, and the fact that we are here… we’ve seen this before and we know how to get through it,” Harjo said. “We almost didn’t make it, but a whole lot of us did and that’s the extraordinary thing. So, why am I so hopeful that we’re going to be here a long time? Because we’re here.”
At 75, Harjo is longtime advocate for Native American rights and received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2014.
This story is a collaboration with National Native News and the Solutions Journalism Network