Even after decades, dioxin continues to persist in the reservation’s water, air, and livestock, leading to devastating consequences for the community. People living on the reservation recount stories of entire families falling ill and dying of rare diseases. The reservation, which once had cancer rates lower than the state average, saw frightening spikes in the cancer rate after the dioxin herbicide had been sprayed.
Corporate and federal interests have long been held as more important than the safety of indigenous people. Unfortunately, corporations still exploit tribal land and its resources for unsavory, dangerous business practices; pipeline failures and toxic mining wastes foul sacred waters and chemicals run freely into rivers and streams.