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Alice Munro defines life as a series of routines that begin malleable but will inevitably settle, harden and end quickly if not disrupted.

A 2012 provision in JCAHO (joint commission accreditation of healthcare organizations) prevents the word ‘disruptive’ from being used in matters related to discipline. A ‘disruptive’ employee is integral to progress.

To understand life on the Navajo Reservation it is imperative to understand the Navajo Preference in Employment Act, (NPEA). It is law in place intended to prevent outsourcing of the Nation’s workforce similar to law on other nations with the same intention, to strengthen its economy.

The Navajo Nation is its own nation with its own laws, customs, language and economy. This concept is difficult to grasp for US citizens. The history of foreign policy starts with Native Americans. With the nation within a nation status, enrolled members of tribes are dual citizens on and off the reservation. This makes US citizens not enrolled with the tribes foreigners when they cross nearby borders onto reservations.

Jesse Maloney has brought cases before labor relations to successful results for himself and others. He’s found an unfortunate commonality; employers are not familiar with Navajo Law. Employers implement policy in violation of NPEA. Over time outsourcing results in high level administrators referencing laws of their own nation to draft policy on the Navajo Nation.
Maloney will work to unpack life on the reservation through the lens of the pandemic.

He will recount his own labor battles as well as others on the reservation demonstrating why disruption is especially important in the context of the pandemic. The Navajo Nation was inordinately affected by infection and death. Disrupting institutions to strengthen the workforce is especially important with the recent loss of so much life on the Navajo Nation.

Jesse Tsinajinnie Maloney grew up on the Leeward side of O’ahu. He went to the same High School as Israel Kamakawiwo’ole. His work has appeared in Turtle Island Quarterly, Peach Velvet Lit Mag, About Place, Cutthroat and other places. His debut full length work Health Carefully was released through Cyberwit press 2019.

In 2020 he co-hosted the late night virtual reading series Midnight Transmission with poet Orlando White.

In 2021 he was nominated for the Pushcart Prize for his poem ‘Eyes of the Leper’ featured in Cutthroat Vol. 26.

He is producing a collaborative spoken word/instrumental album featuring poets Pamela Uschuk and William Pitt Root to be released spring 2022.

Jesse Tsinajinnie Maloney teaches at Dine’ College and lives with his wife and cats on the Navajo Nation.

Proof of Covid vaccination or negative lab PCR Covid test from within 72 hours of event required for entry. Full Covid policy HERE

  • DATE

    Thursday, March 10

  • TIME

    Doors at 6:30, Talk at 7:00 pm

  • COST

    $15 per person

Purchase Tickets Here