The Colorado River Indian Tribes have extended their “Safer at Home” resolution until at least the end of January. In a statement posted Dec. 31 on the CRIT and Manataba Messenger Facebook pages, the Tribes said the resolution, which had been set to expire Dec. 31, have been extended to Jan. 31.
The resolution mandates face masks be worn in all public places on Tribal land. There are also limits on the size of public gatherings and who may have access to Tribal lands.
The resolution had been in effect from March 13 to May 28, 2021. It replaced eased up the restrictions of the more stringent “Stay at Home” resolution that had been in effect before. Citing an increase in cases among Tribal members, the provisions of the “Safer at Home” resolution were reinstated on Sept. 16.
The reinstatement of the “Safer at Home” resolution meant changes to the Native American Days events that had been scheduled for late September and early October. The parade was cancelled, and the Miss CRIT Royalty Pageant became an Internet-only event with no live audience.
As of Dec. 30, the Colorado River Indian Tribes said 1,167 Tribal members had tested positive at Indian Health Services. With a total of about 4,500 members, this means more than one in four have or have had the virus. There have been 20 coronavirus-related deaths among Tribal members. For the United States as a whole, almost one in every six Americans has or has had the virus.
The statement issued by the Tribes reads in part:
“All residents on the CRIT reservation are reminded to follow the CRIT Resolution 556-21, Extension of Phase Two Measures to Mitigate the Spread of COVID-19 with “Safer at Home” Orders Effective from January 1, 2022 – January 31, 2022. Along with the Reservation wide face mask guidance Resolution No. 254-21, in order to protect themselves and their households. Everyone is also reminded to continue to limit contact with anyone who is not a member of your immediate household.
The CRIT Reservation Wide Face Mask Guidance mandates the wearing of face coverings by all persons on the Colorado River Indian Reservation, whether or not fully vaccinated, in any indoor location outside of one’s home. Businesses located within the Colorado River Indian Reservation shall continue to ensure staff and customers use face coverings within their establishments.”
Businesses on Tribal land include Walmart, the stores in the Moovalya Plaza Shopping Center (Safeway, CVS and others), and both Running Man Fuels locations. Face masks are also required in the Tribal office complex at Second Avenue and Mohave Road (Four Corners).
The following are the provisions of the “Safer at Home” resolution as reported on the Manataba Messenger Facebook page:
1) Seasonal residents who reside in any of the Mobile Home, RV Parks, housing developments, or have a homesite lease on the reservation shall be permitted to access their residences but only members of the immediate household of the lessee shall be permitted on-site; and
2) There shall be no gatherings, public or private, of more than 10 individuals indoors or 25 individuals outdoors and social distancing and the use of face masks is required for all gatherings except where there is a submission of a plan under subsection 9 approved by Tribal Council; and
3) Gatherings of more than 10 individuals indoors and 25 outdoors may be permitted for CRIT funerary rites provided all gatherings comply with mitigation plans established by the CRIT Cemetery Committee; and
4) Bars, movies theaters, gyms, museums, gym or stadium sport events, day camps (excluding child care) and concerts shall close unless submission of a plan under subsection 9 approved by Tribal Council; and
5) Indoor dining may be permitted at no more than 50 percent capacity and a plan must be submitted for Tribal Council approval detailing standards to maintain Centers for Disease Control (“CDC”), Occupational Safety and Health Administration (“OSHA”) and CRIT standards; and
6) Churches shall close unless they submit a plan for Tribal Council approval detailing standards to maintain CDC, OSHA and CRIT standards; and
7) Schools may remain open for in-person learning provided Arizona State schools abide by the K-12 Schools Guidance for COVID-19 issued by AZDHS or a plan is submitted for Tribal Council approval detailing standards to maintain CDC, OSHA, and CRIT Standards, including the CRIT face mask mandate as amended by Resolution No. 254-21; and
8) Large venues, such as the Blue Water Resort and Casino, shall close unless they submit a plan for Tribal Council approval detailing standards to maintain CDC, OSHA and CRIT standards; and
9) All plans submitted for Tribal Council for approval to re-open shall detail infection prevention measures, including but not limited to the use of face masks, and engineering and administrative controls for social distancing and reduced occupancy requirements preferably no greater than 50 percent of capacity, sanitation policies and procedures, screening of staff and patrons for COVID-19 identification and isolation, contact tracing protocol for positive case exposures, and communications, training, and procedures for implementation in accordance with CDC, OSHA, and CRIT standards; and
10) All CRIT Tribal Members and the reservation residents are still strongly advised get a COVID-19 vaccination and to stay at home whenever possible to reduce COVID-19 cases and protect the most vulnerable community members from COVID-19.