A group of American Indians in Minnesota is suing officials with the Bureau of Indian Affairs in an effort to restore its federal recognition as an Indian tribe.
In a lawsuit Wednesday, the Sandy Lake Band of Mississippi Chippewa says treaties dating back to 1825 recognize the group as its own tribe. The treaties also set up a reservation in Aitkin County. The lawsuit says Congress never terminated the tribe's status.
But the lawsuit says that since 1980, the BIA hasn't included the group on its list of federally recognized tribes. So members can't get services.
Sandy Skinaway, the Sandy Lake Band chairwoman, says there are roughly 90 people in her group. She says the lawsuit isn't about money - it's about maintaining members' identities and giving their children a sense of history.
A message left with the BIA was not immediately returned Wednesday.
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