Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.) hosted a virtual meeting with Native American leaders from the state of Nevada to hear from them about the needs of tribal nations during the COVID-19 pandemic, particularly as related to mental health.
“Today I had the opportunity to discuss the needs of tribal nations in Nevada with leaders around the Silver State. The coronavirus pandemic has hit tribes especially hard, and I’m committed to working to get them every support I can. I’m especially concerned about the mental health impacts of COVID-19 on communities across the country that were already struggling—the isolation of the pandemic has only exacerbated challenges tribal nations were facing. I’m grateful to work with Native leaders across Nevada to understand how I can best serve their communities and support the services they offer tribal members, and I will continue to advocate for ways to address their concerns in Washington.”
Senator Cortez Masto has voted for all five coronavirus relief packages that have been enacted into law. The most recent of those packages, the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021, contained additional relief for tribes, including the following:
- A one-year extension of the deadline for tribes to use CARES Act funding
- An additional $600 in stimulus checks for individuals;
- An additional $1 billion for the Indian Health Service for vaccines and testing;
- $1 billion for tribal broadband;
- $800 million for housing assistance, with additional funding for utility assistance;
- More than $500 million for Bureau of Indian Education schools.
In addition, the Act allocated $125 million in additional funding for tribes and urban Indian health organizations within the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration to address the mental health needs of Native communities.