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Old 12-21-2003, 12:13 PM   #1
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McDonalds charity excludes Native Americans/ Alaska Natives

McDonalds charity excludes Native Americans/ Alaska Natives
Old myths about gaming and BIA education grants maybe keeping Indians out

ANCHORAGE AK
Sam Lewin 12/19/2003

One of the largest charities in the country specifically offers
scholarships to just about every major minority group in the country except
Native Americans. In defending the decision, officials at the Ronald
McDonald House Charities said they offer assistance to those children who
are a priority.

John Smelcer is an Ahtna Athabaskan Indian and Tribal Grants Administrator
in Anchorage, Alaska. His daughter, Zora, is a sophomore in high school. In
September, father and daughter were waiting for an order of cheeseburgers
at an Anchorage McDonalds and Smelcer, reading information about Ronald
McDonald House Charities, noticed that the organization offers
race-specific scholarships to African American, Asian American and Hispanic
American students. The charity’s literature stated they “ offer
scholarships to students from disadvantaged communities who face limited
access to education and career opportunities.”

Smelcer wondered why Native Americans are not included in the list.
According to recent data from the U.S. Census Bureau, the median income of
the average American Indian home is only $26,000, compared to $37,000 for
African Americans. Only 2.1% of Native American high school students attend
college.

So Smelcer began to write letters to the charity, quoting figures like the
one above, and asking for a change in policy.

“ American Indian income is 30-40% less than the U.S. average,” stated one
correspondence. “ Your policy, while not illegal, is entirely unethical. To
award scholarships to three of the four national, protected minority
groups, to purposely discriminate against one group (possibly on the basis
of misinformation and personal prejudice) is unethical.”

Several months later, Smelcer finally received several responses from the
charity. Both spelled his name wrong. Ronald McDonald House Charities
Director Susan Kerr said the exclusion of Native American children was not
a mistake.

“…We, just like lots of folks these days, must prioritize our dollars
available for grants and programs,” Kerr wrote. “At this time, the chapters
participating in the scholarship programs feel we have the scholarships
that fit the majority of their constituents’ needs now.”

Kerr said Native students are welcome to apply for grants under a “general
scholarship”. She did not return a phone call from the Native American
Times seeking comment.

“ We must prioritize how we spend the dollars we have for scholarships,”
wrote Ronald McDonald House Charities official Debbie Stone. “ When we look
at the data related to need for assistance nationally, Native Americans do
appear on the list. However, students of African American, Hispanic and
Asian heritage still need a tremendous level of assistance.”

Smelcer said the whole situation has left him frustrated and wondering if
the myth that “all Indian students go to college for free” has permeated
the charity’s management. He is also disappointed for Zora, who hopes to
someday become a doctor.

“ I’m just a father and looking for chances to get a scholarship for my
daughter. It angered me that her favorite restaurant her whole life would
not give her a chance.”
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Old 12-21-2003, 01:55 PM   #2
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:TD: Not only are the standing behind these "reasons", but they think it's logical? Morons.
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Old 12-21-2003, 03:11 PM   #3
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So the rest of you are you going to boycott mcdonalds? Or are you going to carry on with your apathetic lives and support an organization that takes your money but doesn't give a crap about your community?
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Old 12-22-2003, 02:38 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally posted by Gache
So the rest of you are you going to boycott mcdonalds? Or are you going to carry on with your apathetic lives and support an organization that takes your money but doesn't give a crap about your community?
I thought Mcdonals were franchises and I did a search for Mcdonalds franchises and on their site it said aprox. 70 % were franchises, so I dunno how much good boycoting would be ?
I also found the website for the scolorships and it has a contact us on the right side of the page. Maybe educating them and letting them know how people feal about it ?
http://www.rmhc.com/mission/scholarships/
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Old 12-22-2003, 12:49 PM   #5
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Damn, dude. . .I never go to McDonald's anyway. YUCK! ;)
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Old 12-22-2003, 05:29 PM   #6
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portion of franchise money always makes it up the ladder. They have to buy the product from mcdonalds corp.
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Old 12-22-2003, 05:55 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally posted by Gache
So the rest of you are you going to boycott mcdonalds? Or are you going to carry on with your apathetic lives and support an organization that takes your money but doesn't give a crap about your community?
How bout I don't donate to McDonald's charities and donate to native american one's instead? (apathetic lives... sheesh)
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Old 12-22-2003, 06:41 PM   #8
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well theres quite a few of them in here these days blackbear, but I didnt mean everyone
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Old 12-23-2003, 01:01 PM   #9
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Anyone know where Ronald McDonald House Charities is located? I'm moving to Chicago soon and McDonalds Corporate Headquarters is near so I can "correspond" with their office easily. Not to defend McDonalds, but when you have a headquarters in a state such as Illinois, where no Native American tribes are located, I don't think much thought is given to native issues. It prolly would be a different situation if the headquarters were in Oklahoma or South Dakota. Maybe the McDonald's Corporation just needs more enlightenment!:o
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Old 12-23-2003, 09:07 PM   #10
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Well now Ronald McDonald house is something entirely different from the scholarship things.. I mean it's a medical charity for children and the families of children with serious and terminal illnesses, and it's not a discriminitory area. I've known natives and whites and blacks alike that Ronald mcDonald House has helped. And there are Ronald Mc donald houses all over the US . And actually there are TWO in Oklahoma.. here check for yourself.

http://www.rmhc.com/mission/rmhs/search/
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Old 12-30-2003, 08:24 AM   #11
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That maddens me so much! On the other hand, I am not all that surprised, either. Something simple such as the damn media won't even cover anything good we have happening, just the negative, "typical" stuff with ndns.

Inconsideration of first nation peoples ignites the ire in me. :Yell
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Old 12-30-2003, 11:10 AM   #12
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Inconsideration of first nation peoples ignites the ire in me. :Yell
whats an ire? :Chatter
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Old 12-30-2003, 11:57 AM   #13
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Oh good, the address is corporate headquarters near where I plan to move. Gonna get acquainted with them Micky D's peoples. :D
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Old 12-30-2003, 04:39 PM   #14
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ire means gettin all roud up. Havent heard that word in the last 2 generations how old is ojibsweetie ;) :p
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Old 01-10-2004, 10:07 PM   #15
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:Chatter
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Old 01-11-2004, 08:35 PM   #16
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discriminate against natives.....?!...My native a$$ gets fat off there food....


thats messed upp
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Old 01-17-2004, 02:36 PM   #17
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i personally am going to boycott mcdonalds, encourage all my friends (native and non-native) to boycott them as well, and definately put an editorial in one of the local papers. it's one thing to have a legitimate reason for excluding natives, but to say that native children are not a priority as a minority group is just down right stupid. but that's just my 2 cents.
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Old 01-17-2004, 04:49 PM   #18
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McDonalds

Does the Squeakly wheel truly gets the oil?

We have got to learn to play the game better. Does anyone who's old enough to remember the demostrations/protest that brought in the Civil Rights Act and the whole 'minority'designation ever remember seeing a bunch of Hipanics or Asians participating?

No, but guess which 2 miniorities take advantage of it in terms of college enrollment/grants and SBA & Gov. Grant business financing? Their tactic was let the others protest, hoop and holler, we will wait and litigate if not included, as the census rolls validated their minority status.

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