Texas Apache tribe flies free: Column

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Ryan Colby 202-349-7219 media@becketlaw.org

USA Today,  July 7, 2016

We went to court, represented by the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, and we won, setting new precedent for Native Americans throughout the country. Under theReligious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA), our religious rights as Native Americans were protected from unnecessary government intrusion. Last month, the federal government finalized a historic settlement agreement with me and over 400 members of my congregation, recognizing our right to freely use eagle feathers for religious worship. We are now allowed to keep, share, loan, and travel with our eagle feathers, and even obtain new ones from the National Eagle Repository, without any need for a government “permit.” The government also agreed that it will revisit the laws that restrict Native American possession of eagle feathers in the future.