Abenaki seek to tweak new recognition law

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Vermont’s Abenaki Indians are hoping the Legislature will make it possible to sell their crafts as Indian made.

Lawmakers are expected to be asked to fix a 2006 law that recognized the Abenaki as a minority population in the state, but didn’t set up a way for individual bands of Abenaki to gain recognition.

That meant that under federal law, the Indians still were short of a key goal of recognition: allowing them to sell their crafts as Indian-made.

Under a change expected to be considered in the upcoming legislative session, bands of Abenaki could apply to the Vermont Commission on Native American Affairs for recognition, which would then pass its recommendation on to the Legislature.


AP Photo/Toby Talbot

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