Posted on Oct 22, 2015

Window Rock – President Russell Begaye issued the following statement today on the Federal Emergency Management Agency denying the Navajo Nation’s request for an Emergency Declaration in response to the Gold King Mine spill:

“The Gold King Mine spill culturally and economically devastated the Navajo Nation, and the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s decision to decline our request for an emergency declaration is disappointing and wrong. Our people have suffered due to the reckless actions of the Environmental Protection Agency, and the federal government’s failed response to this crisis has only added insult to injury. The Obama Administration has turned down virtually every request we have made for greater assistance, each time referring us back to the EPA – the same agency that caused the problem in the first place.

“Its time for President Obama to take action to fix the disaster that was caused by his EPA. The President needs to respond to bipartisan calls to issue an emergency declaration and instruct all federal agencies to assist the Navajo Nation instead of sending our requests back to the EPA.

“The Navajo Nation will appeal FEMA’s ill-advised decision and fight for every resource possible to address the damage caused by the Gold King Mine spill. As President, I will not rest until our people have been made whole and fairly compensated for their losses.”