Our Chicago: Town hall honors Native American Heritage Month

Moderated by ABC7's Roz Varon
CHICAGO (WLS) -- ABC 7, Chicago's No. 1 station for news, presented a virtual town hall celebrating Native American Heritage Month and raising awareness of the important issues affecting this community. ABC 7 Chicago's Roz Varon moderated "OUR CHICAGO: Voices of the Community," available on abc7chicago.com Thursday, Nov. 18, at 2:00 p.m.

According to the American Indian Center website, "Chicago is the third-largest urban Native American population in the country with over one-hundred tribal nations represented." It goes on to add that because 75% of Native people are now living off-reservation and in urban settings, there has been a population shift. One of the results has been a diverse multitribal community that needs common social and cultural places to gather.

During this week's town hall, "OUR CHICAGO: Voices of the Community," Roz Varon led an informative discussion with several leaders of Chicago's Native American community. These leaders represent social services, education and business with unique insights into the serious problems and obstacles Native Americans face when it comes to unemployment, housing insecurity, overcrowding and one of the lowest high school graduation rates among ethnic groups and the lack of resources contributing to these issues. Questions of tribal enrollment and what it means relative to self-identification, as well as the recent efforts to raise awareness of missing, exploited and murdered indigenous women and girls were also included in the discussion.

Our guests provided information on various available resources for Native Americans in Chicago and the organizations providing them. Finally, Roz asked guests to share details on some of the enriching cultural celebrations taking place in Chicago and throughout Illinois.

This week's panelists included:

-RoxAnne M. LaVallie-Unabia, American Indian Health Service of Chicago
-Andrew Johnson, Native American Chamber of Commerce - Illinois
-Lisa Bernal, Chicago Public Schools American Indian Education Program
-Melodi Serna, American Indian Center Chicago
-Shelly J. Tucciarelli, Visionary Ventures NFP Corporation

The virtual town hall was also exclusively streamed live on ABC 7's Facebook Live, YouTube, ABC 7's app, and ABC 7's connected TV apps on Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Android TV and Roku.

Twitter: https://twitter.com/abc7chicago
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/abc7Chicago/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/abc7Chicago/

PREVIOUS TOWN HALLS:


Our Chicago: Town hall highlights organizations supporting veterans
Our Chicago: Town hall focuses on domestic violence issues
Our Chicago: Town hall features most Chicago's powerful Latina leaders
Our Chicago: Town hall explores how Latina, Latino leaders have shaped chambers of commerce
Our Chicago: Town hall explores how Latino tech leaders are creating career pathways
Our Chicago: Town hall examines expiring Illinois eviction moratorium's impact on Latinos
Our Chicago: Town Hall highlights movement to recognize Black leaders in Chicago monuments
Our Chicago: ABC7's Will Jones leads town hall on reparations, Evanston's historic plan
Our Chicago: ABC7's Jason Knowles leads Pride Month discussion with LGBTQ+ youth
Our Chicago: Town hall celebrates Pride Month

Our Chicago: Town hall explores Chicago's diverse Asian communities
Our Chicago: Town hall focuses on mental health support for Black men
Our Chicago: Town hall focuses on mental health issues in children, adolescents
Our Chicago: Town hall addresses hate crimes against AAPI community
Our Chicago: Town hall celebrates Earth Month and efforts by Chicago's local community organizations
Our Chicago: Town hall on keeping Latino youth safe, demands for investment in wake of Adam Toledo shooting
Our Chicago: Town hall on impact of climate change and weather on our environment
Our Chicago: Town hall with Chicago religious leaders addresses trust, safety around COVID-19 vaccines
Our Chicago: Town hall celebrates women entrepreneurs, hosted by Tanja Babich
Our Chicago: Town hall examines city's women in leadership roles amid Women's History Month
Our Chicago: Impact of pandemic recession on working women
Our Chicago: A Conversation About 'Black, Latino Houses Matter' Program
Our Chicago: A Conversation About Vaccine Efforts
Our Chicago: Voices of the Community town hall examines discriminatory effects of redlining
Our Chicago: Voices of the Community town hall on COVID and the vaccine in the Latinx community
Our Chicago: Voices of the Community town hall showcases faith leaders and 'Family Value' anti-violence campaign
Our Chicago: Voices of the Community town hall on blood donations during COVID pandemic hosted by Hosea Sanders
Our Chicago: Voices of the Community town hall on COVID-19 vaccine concerns in communities of color, hosted by Cheryl Burton
Our Chicago: Voices of the Community on Asian American harassment and bystander intervention, moderated by Ravi Baichwal
Our Chicago: Voices of the Community: Significance of Kamala Harris' election to vice president-elect; Cheryl Burton moderates
ABC 7 Chicago hosts digital town hall to recognize Native American Heritage Month; Leah Hope moderates

ABC 7 Chicago hosts digital town hall to explore expectations for office holders after upcoming election
ABC 7 Chicago hosts digital town hall on bullying prevention moderated by Karen Jordan
ABC 7 Chicago presents: Do You Hear Me? A discussion highlighting journey of prominent Latino communities in Chicago hosted by Stacey Baca
ABC 7 Chicago presents: Do You Hear Me? A Conversation about Latinos and the 2020 Census hosted by Rob Elgas
ABC 7 Chicago presents: Do You Hear Me? A Discussion about Race, a virtual town hall with Windy City Live's Val Warner
ABC 7 Chicago presents: Do You Hear Me? A Discussion about Race, a virtual town hall with ABC 7's Evelyn Holmes
ABC 7 Chicago presents: Do You Hear Me? A Discussion about Race on August 13 with ABC 7's Evelyn Holmes
ABC 7 Chicago presents: Do You Hear Me? A Discussion about Race, a virtual town hall with Windy City Live's Val Warner
Do You Hear Me? A Discussion about Race on August 6, 2020: Hosted by Samantha Chatman, on mental health in the Black community
Do You Hear Me? A Discussion about Race on July 23, 2020: Hosted by WCL's Val Warner, on race and education during COVID-19
Do You Hear Me? A Discussion about Race on July 23, 2020: Hosted by Jim Rose, on race and racism in sports
Do You Hear Me? A Discussion about Race on July 16, 2020: Hosted by Cheryl Burton, on violence
Do You Hear Me? A Discussion about Race on July 9, 2020: Hosted by Samantha Chatman, on Black Greek letter organizations
Do You Hear Me? A Discussion about Race on July 2, 2020: Hosted by Hosea Sanders, on summer festivals
Do You Hear Me? A Discussion about Race on June 25, 2020: Hostel by Terrell Brown and Leah Hope, on racism in public education
Do You Hear Me? A Discussion about Race on June 18, 2020: Hosted by Evelyn Holmes and Will Jones,on youth movements
Do You Hear Me? A Discussion about Race on June 11, 2020: Hosted by Karen Jordan and Hosea Sanders, on organizational social change
Do You Hear Me? A Discussion about Race on June 4, 2020: Hosted by Cheryl Burton, on the aftermath of George Floyd's death


About ABC7/WLS-TV Chicago
ABC7/WLS-TV Chicago is the No. 1 local news source and most-watched television station in Chicago. With top-rated daily newscasts spanning decades and the largest social media presence in the market with more than 2.3 million Facebook followers, ABC7 Eyewitness News provides breaking news, investigative reporting, weather, politics, traffic and sports in the multiplatform space to Chicago, the suburbs and northwest Indiana. Named Best News Operation by the Associated Press for four consecutive years, the station produces 41 hours of local news weekly and Chicago's only local weekday entertainment talk show, "Windy City LIVE," as well as its highest-rated New Year's Eve special. ABC7's award-winning programs such as "Heart and Soul," "The Ñ Beat" and "Asian Influences" showcase the city's diversity, while being the only Chicago station producing and broadcasting parades representing Chicago's rich cultural history. In addition to producing town halls focused on current social issues, the station has a long and proud tradition of broadcasting political candidate debates keeping Chicago's electorate informed. ABC7's outreach efforts include annual partnerships with the Red Cross for life-saving blood drives and, most recently, spearheading an effort to raise more than $1.5 million for area food pantries.
Copyright © 2021 WLS-TV. All Rights Reserved.