Tribal Government & News

Tribal Council approves application for suicide prevention grant

05.15.2024 Danielle Harrison Tribal Council


By Danielle Harrison

Smoke Signals editor

With youth mental health concerns at an all-time high following the COVID-19 pandemic, Tribal Council approved a grant application for suicide prevention efforts at its Wednesday, May 15, meeting.

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration Garrett Lee Smith State/Tribal Youth Prevention and Early Intervention grant would be for five years and total $3.67 million.

 “This grant through SAMSA is specifically targeting suicide prevention and intervention in our community,” Grants Coordinator Dana Morfin said at a Tuesday, May 14, Legislative Action Committee meeting. “We haven’t received this grant before but we have received similar funding from this agency in the past…So, this grant would basically be serving as the next stepping stone and providing suicide prevention services in our community.”

Morfin added that the grant would provide funding for a mental health counselor to assist with a focused suicide intervention and provide for community training opportunities similar to GONA and trauma-informed trainings that have been provided in the past.

“I want to thank you and the whole team for bringing this forward,” Tribal Council member Kathleen George said. “It’s obviously a tremendous spending package and we know that the services are tremendously needed. We know coming out of COVID, many of our youth are really needing help and not finding easy ways to get it. Anything we can do to be that warm reception, we definitely want to do that.”

In other action, Tribal Council:

  • Approved four lease applications with the Bureau of Indian Affairs Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act of 1975, which allows Tribes carry out federal functions under a self-determination contract or self-governance compact to enter into a lease agreement for the Tribally owned or rented facility used to carry out those functions. The Department of Interior then negotiates with the Tribe or Tribal organization on eligible expenses for use of the facility and pays the Tribe for those expenses;
  • Approved an agreement with Brightwheel Software that included limited waivers of sovereign immunity;
  • Approved a $199,997 grant application to the Oregon Department of Education’s Supporting Oregon Tribal Languages Grant;
  • Approved a contract with Sculptured Construction Incorporated to perform landscaping services at Creekside Elder Housing;
  • Approved a contract with Elk Mountain Construction to perform construction services for the Route 312 culvert replacement project;
  • Authorized a Tribal credit card for up to $5,000 for Ceded Lands Program Manager Torey Wakeland;
  • Authorized a Tribal credit card for up to $5,000 for Natural Resources Department Manager Colby Drake;
  • Authorized three loans from the Tribe’s line of credit to Spirit Mountain Casino for the remodel of its outdoor courtyard, hotel lobby/corridor and RV park clubhouse for a total of $5.7 million;
  • Approved a settlement agreement and release of claims, including a forgiveness of Tribal debt for a distressed property at Grand Meadows;
  • Approved a secured loan of $600,000 from Upqwena LLC to Shasta Administrative Services;
  • And denied enrolling an infant into the Tribe because they didn’t meet the requirements outlined in the Tribal Constitution and Enrollment Ordinance.

To watch the entire meeting, visit the Tribal government’s website at and click on the Videos tab.