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While Halloween is commonly celebrated with trick-or-treating, pumpkin carving and spooky decor, year after year many people sport “costumes” that are often times culturally insensitive. Four years ago, Ohio University launched the campaign, “We’re A Culture, Not A Costume” and since then, conversations on this topic have trended across the country. Recently, a video on Buzzfeed went viral after real Native Americans were filmed wearing “Indian” Halloween costumes, and setting the record straight.

The problem that many Native Americans have during Halloween is that their culture is being portrayed in an offensive, shallow, and untrue representation.

The average United States resident knows little about the true history and current state of today’s Native America Indians. Many only see the romanticized version of the truth highlighted in movies and television. And yet, hidden away in Pine Ridge, South Dakota lies an entire Native American population, The Lakota Sioux Tribe, living in conditions equivalent to those found among the poorest third world countries.

True Sioux Hope Foundation is on a mission to make an impactful change for the Lakota Sioux Tribe living in South Dakota, and hopes to do so by spreading cultural awareness during this time of year. The Lakota Sioux have already endured many years of loss, injustice and disrespect. So, we urge you to be respectful, and not contibute to the mockery this Halloween. Remember -- Native American Indians are a culture, not a costume!

Join the conversation this Halloween and follow TSHF on Twitter @TrueSiouxHope and Facebook.

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