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HomeNewsCherokee Nation surpasses 400K members since COVID relief payment announced

Cherokee Nation surpasses 400K members since COVID relief payment announced

The Cherokee Nation reached a membership milestone surpassing 400,000 members as citizenship applications continue to pour in since COVID-19 relief payments were announced for tribe members.

The nation’s registrar has received roughly 2,000 citizen applications per week, 10 times more than it typically receives, ever since the relief payments were announced in May, officials told KFOR.

The 400,000th citizen was officially enrolled on Tuesday.

Principal Chief Chuck Hoskin Jr. announced $2,000 in federal payments for all of those who are approved for Cherokee Nation citizenship by June of 2022.

 “In the coming months, Cherokee Nation Registration will be adding thousands more tribal citizens whose applications are already pending and awaiting verification, making the Cherokee Nation the largest tribe in the United States,” Hoskin Jr. said in a statement. 

“With this growth, we will continue to be an important force for economies, education, health care, quality of life issues, and environmental matters,” Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Chuck Hoskin Jr. said.

Principal Chief Chuck Hoskin Jr. announced all of those who are approved for Cherokee Nation citizenship by June of 2022 would be granted $2,000 in federal payments.AP

To help with the massive influx which has caused major backlog, the Registration Department has added 12 employees to its 45-person team.

“Reaching 400,000 Cherokee Nation citizens has really put the tribe’s Registration Department to the test, but we are determined to provide this important service so that our citizens can obtain the COVID-19 relief assistance they need during this pandemic and continue to stay engaged with their tribe,” said Interim Registrar Derrick Vann to KFOR.

About 140,000 of the 400,000 citizens reside on the Cherokee Nation reservation, according to the tribe.

“Our Cherokee Nation employees continue to show strength to reach amazing milestones in the midst of a pandemic and to help our citizens with citizenship, support and recovery and rebuilding their lives from COVID-19,” said Cherokee Nation Deputy Chief Bryan Warner. “I’m truly proud of this achievement.”

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