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What is the Snyder Act of 1921 and who does it apply to?


The Snyder Act of 1921 authorizes Indian Affairs to operate programs for the benefit and assistance of American Indians and Alaska Natives throughout the United States. The Act is one of several legislative reforms that was designed to improve the living conditions for American Indians on reservations and in government boarding schools.

The Indian Citizenship Act of 1924, also known as the Snyder Act, was signed into law by President Calvin Coolidge on June 2, 1924, granting full citizenship to American Indians and Alaska Native Americans. Though the Fifteenth Amendment, passed in 1870, granted all U.S. citizens the right to vote regardless of race, it wasn't until the 1924 that American Indians and Alaska Native Americans could enjoy the rights granted by this amendment.

Today, Indian Affairs provides services directly or through contracts, grants, or compacts to a service population of approximately 2 million American Indians and Alaska Native people who are members of 574 federally recognized tribes in the 48 contiguous United States and Alaska. Indian Affairs programs support tribes and improve the quality of life of their members and communities.

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