Native Americans

Robert F. Bukaty / AP Photo

Tribal leaders, lawmakers and environmental groups are praising passage of a bill, signed into law by Gov. Janet Mills Friday, that establishes water quality standards for sustenance fishing in tribal waters.

Mal Leary / Maine Public

Maine Gov. Janet Mills has signed legislation designed to protect the rights of Maine Indigenous Tribes to safely fish on certain rivers and streams.

Robert F. Bukaty / AP Photo

Democratic Gov. Janet Mills is attempting to establish new water quality protections to allow sustenance fishing by Maine's Native American tribes.

Office of Gov. Janet Mills

Democratic Gov. Janet Mills has signed into law a bill that will change the Columbus Day holiday to Indigenous Peoples Day. Maine now joins seven other states that adopted similar changes to celebrate the second Monday in October by replacing Columbus Day and honoring the native North Americans victimized during and after the Italian explorers expeditions.

And Mills, who has had a rocky past with Maine's native tribes, says she is moving quickly to restore a tribal-state commission, an inter-governmental body created nearly 40 years ago, but largely neglected in recent years. 

WISCASSET, Maine — A Wiscasset road has been renamed less than two months after town officials approved calling it Redskin's Drive, a move that drew condemnation from Native American groups.

Selectman on Tuesday approved renaming the street Micmac Drive, a change requested by residents.

  Chiefs from three of the four federally recognized Native American peoples in Maine participated in a roundtable discussion focused on economic conditions among Native American communities. The discussion was moderated by MPBN's Jennifer Rooks. The panel included: Clayton Cleaves of the Passamaquoddy Tribe; Kirk Francis of the Penobscot Indian Nation; Rick Getchell of the Aroostook Band of Micmacs; and Joseph Sockabasin of the Passamaquoddy Tribe.