Mar 28, 2015 - Statement of Vern Traversie in wake of jury denying his claims
A jury in the U.S. District Court of South Dakota has ruled against Vern Traversie, the 71-year-old Cheyenne River Sioux man, who brought suit over civil rights violations that he endured while a patient in the Rapid City Regional Hospital in 2011.
Vern Traversie’s statement:
“I thank the jurors and the Court for giving me my day in court. For me this is a victory in itself. I shared my story about what happened to me while I was a patient at the Rapid City Regional Hospital for one reason: to make sure that no other American Indian is treated in an uncaring way.
I believe because I stood up for justice, powerful institutions in Rapid City have learned that American Indians have a voice and we are not afraid to call for justice.
You need to understand this, mine is just one case in the fight for civil rights for American Indians in South Dakota. It is one part of the long standing struggle for the dignity and respect that American Indian men, women, and children in South Dakota deserve, just like anybody else. We are asking for nothing more than what most people take for granted: human rights.
Today I thank everyone who supported me in this fight for justice, and I thank my God that I am alive to do what I can for my people.”
Original Story on the case, ‘Lakota Man Accuses Hospital of Healthcare Hate Crime’