Thanksgiving Holiday Hours

In observance of the Thanksgiving holiday, offices of the Southern Ute Indian Tribe will be closed on Wednesday, November 25, 2020. Modified business hours will resume on Monday, November 30, 2020.

Thanksgiving Turkey
photo by Nathan Brescia

Social Gatherings Protocol

SUIT Public Service Announcement


A COVID-19 outbreak could last for a long time. Depending on the severity of the outbreak, public health officials have recommended community action designed to limit exposure to COVID-19. The Southern Ute Incident Management Team is ordering postponement or cancellation of large events with more than 250 people within the boundaries of the Southern Ute Reservation. This is for the safety and well-being of your event staff, participants, and the community.

Social distancing measures are taken to restrict when and where people can gather to stop or slow the spread of infectious diseases. Social distancing measures include limiting large groups of people coming together, closing buildings and canceling events. Recommendations have been made by the CDC, to avoid sporting events, community festivals/gatherings, and concerts at this time. Recommendations to change your daily habits such as shopping off peak hours are encouraged along with taking advantage of delivery or pick up services with retailers.

SUIT Travel Updates 3/13/2020

SUIT Public Service Announcement

As the Nation, the State of Colorado, and the Southern Ute Indian Tribe continue to assess the number of positive cases of COVID-19, the Southern Ute Tribal government is continuing to restrict all employee business travel for all business and governmental entities.

Tribal employees returning from personal travel who have any reason to believe they have been exposed to COVID-19 or who have symptoms of respiratory illness must self-report to their immediate supervisor by telephone at the start of their next shift or sooner if at all possible.

Southern Ute Indian Tribe’s Permanent Fund Human Resources Department has been in collaboration with the Incident Command Team and developed a flowchart as attached to assist and clarify any concerns or questions related to travel at this current time.

The current directives, being issued by the Southern Ute Tribe’s COVID 19 Incident Command Team are designed to protect the elderly, those who are classified in the high-risk population for susceptibility, the tribal community and to maintain continuity of operations for our tribal government. We all share those responsibilities equally, and ask your cooperation, support and assistance in making these protective measures successful.

Beginning Monday, March 16, 2020, Tribal staff who may have medical questions or need clarification on symptomatic concerns can call the Southern Ute Health Center (970) 563-2362. For tribal members who may have medical questions or need clarification on symptomatic concerns following the return from traveling to exposed areas can call the Southern Ute Health Center at (970) 563-2363.

If further clarification is needed for staff regarding the travel stipulations, business restrictions, and/or return to work protocol, staff will directed to contact Mr. Don Brockus, Risk Manager, for the Southern Ute Indian Tribe at (970) 563-2449 or via email at

SUIT Public Service Announcement – How to help limit spread of COVID-19

SUIT Public Service Announcement

March 11, 2020

As the number of positive cases around the Nation and the State of Colorado continues to grow, the Southern Ute Indian Tribe, the State of Colorado, and local public health agencies are working to limit and slow the potential spread of this disease, and all Coloradans can help. We advise you to stay informed with reliable sources of information and take everyday actions to protect yourself and share accurate information with family, neighbors, friends and co-workers, especially those who may have difficulty receiving or understanding the information. The following information is recommended protocol by the CDC as stated:

Promote a household plan of action such as the following:

  • Talk with the people who need to be included in your plan.
  • Plan ways to care for those who might be at greater risk for serious complications
  • Get to know your neighbors.
  • Identify aid organizations in your community.
  • Create an emergency contact list.

Promote good personal hygiene and health habits for home-based action such as the following:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home if you have the following symptoms: fever, cough, and shortness of breath.
  • Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash, or use your inner elbow or sleeve.
  • Clean frequently touched surfaces and objects daily (e.g., tables, countertops, light switches, doorknobs, and cabinet handles) using a regular household detergent and water.
    • If surfaces are dirty, they should be cleaned using a detergent and water prior to disinfection. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions for all cleaning and disinfection of products
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
  • Always wash your hands with soap and water if your hands are visibly dirty.

Choose a room in your home that can be used to separate sick household members from those who are healthy.  Learn about the emergency operations plan at your child’s school or childcare facility.  Plan for potential changes at your workplace.  Remain calm and prepared.

How COVID-19 spreads:

The disease most likely ​spreads the same way as similar respiratory illnesses.

  • Person-to-person contact:
    • To become sick, you have to be exposed to the virus. CDC defines exposure as being within 6 feet (2 meters) of someone with a confirmed infection for a prolonged period of time.
  • Exposure can occur through respiratory droplets — when an infected person coughs or sneezes, similar to how flu and other respiratory viruses spread.
  • Infected surfaces or objects:
    • It may be possible to get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching your mouth, nose, or possibly your eyes.

For these reasons, people at increased risk of infection are:

  • People who have been to areas where widespread community transmission is occurring.
  • People who had direct close contact with someone who has COVID-19.
  • Illness can be severe and require hospitalization, but most individuals recover by resting, drinking plenty of liquids, and taking pain and fever-reducing medications.

If you are sick:

  • It is important to call ahead before going to see a doctor or emergency room to prevent the spread of illness. Tell them your symptoms and if you suspect you were exposed to someone with COVID-19 or had recent travel to a place that is experiencing community spread.

The following resources are being provided as followed:

  • SUHC 970-563-4581 Monday-Friday 7:30am-5:30pm. If you have questions or concerns after hours, you can call the same number and the answering service will assist you. If this is an emergency, call 911.
  • Mercy Medical Center’s Emergency Room is requesting that patients who believe that they may have COVID-19, should call the emergency room directly at 970-764-2100.
  • State public health web page:
  • Facebook ( )
  • Twitter ( @CDPHE )
  • CDC web page:
  • CO-HELP is Colorado’s call line for the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). People who have general questions about COVID-19 can call CO HELP at 303-389-1687 or 1-877-462-2911, for answers in many languages, or email them at for answers in English.

If you are concerned about your symptoms, please contact your primary care provider or call the Southern Ute Health Center at 563-4581 to speak with a Health Care Professional.

Focus Group for Native American Students, 6th-12th grade



The Colorado Departments of Public Health and Environment and Human Services are developing a new advertising campaign to help parents and other adults better understand what they can do to support Colorado youth – like you!


Participate in a discussion in your community and share your experiences and opinions.


Sunday, Jan 5 – 1:30pm or 2:45pm (Ignacio)

Monday, Jan 6 – 4:00pm or 5:15pm (Durango)


Sign up here:

We will follow-up with your parent or guardian to confirm your participation and specific details.

All of the information discussed will be kept strictly confidential.

For more information contact Ceriss Blackwood at


In recent days, several mountain lion sightings have been reported along the Pine River
corridor in the Ignacio vicinity (Ute Park south to Shoshone Park). Although lions are rarely
seen here, the river corridor offers excellent habitat for this large predator, and its occurrence
here is not unusual.

If you use the trails or parks below Tribal Campus and along the Pine River, please take some
basic precautions to minimize your chance of an encounter with a lion. These include the

  • Travel with a friend or group and keep small children near you
  • Avoid walking within densely vegetated sites
  • Do not let pets run unleashed
  • Avoid recreating at dawn and dusk, when lions are most active
  • Carry a weapon or deterrent device within quick reach
  • Know how to behave if you encounter a mountain lion


In the vast majority of mountain lion encounters, the animals exhibit avoidance, indifference,
or curiosity that never results in human injury. However, it is natural to be alarmed if you have
an encounter of any kind. Try to keep your cool and do the following:

  • Recognize threatening lion behavior. If the animal quickly passes from view and is
    not observed again, the risk of further encounter is minimal. However, if the lion
    exhibits a pattern of follow‐and‐hide, creeping, or intense staring, recognize this as
    threatening behavior and respond accordingly.
  • Do NOT run from a lion, as this could trigger a predatory instinct to chase. Instead,
    walk away slowly from the encounter.
  • Try to appear as intimidating as possible: maintain eye contact, yell at the animal,
    stand tall, and wave your arms.
  • If attacked, FIGHT back. Use a weapon such as a knife, walking stick, or rocks. Lion
    attacks can often be stopped by effective resistance.

If you have recently encountered a mountain lion in this area, or would like additional
information, please contact the Wildlife Division at the number below. After hours please
contact Southern Ute Dispatch for assistance.

Southern Ute Wildlife Division – (970) 563‐0130

Southern Ute Dispatch – (970) 563‐4401