Navajo Nation surpasses Cherokee to become largest US tribe

Tribes Virus Relief Funding

Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez speaks during a live radio address with first lady Jill Biden in attendance, in Window Rock, Ariz., on Thursday, April 22, 2021. Nez questions the fairness in awarding more money to tribes that don’t have at least a one-fourth blood quantum. “Here on Navajo, we verify blood quantum, and that’s a requirement,” he says. (Mandel Ngan/Pool via AP, File)

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. (AP) — The Navajo Nation has by far the largest land mass of any Native American tribe. Now, it’s boasting the largest enrolled population, too.

The number of Navajo citizens grew to nearly 400,000 as a result of payments made to members for hardships during the pandemic. The tribe now tops the Cherokee Nation’s enrollment of 392,000, but a spokeswoman says the Oklahoma tribe also is growing.

The U.S. Treasury Department will use tribes’ own enrollment figures to pay out a chunk of the $20 billion set aside for them in the latest virus relief funding package. Tribes have until Monday to submit data online.

Categories: Coronavirus, National News