Niskithe Prayer Camp protests housing development at Lincoln City Council meeting

LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN) — The Niskithe Prayer Camp was joined Monday by two other nonprofits during a protest of a housing development in south Lincoln.

Despite multiple attempts to stop it, last week, construction began on the site, which is near a Native American sweat lodge.

The prayer camp says the land is sacred.

More than 30 people were outside the County-City Building during the City Council meeting, making their voices heard.

Inside the council chambers, protesters wore tape over their mouths and stood quietly at the podium. They said this is symbolic of how the City of Lincoln has silenced them.

Kevin Abourezk, a supporter of the prayer camp, says that he hopes the city can reason with the group and give it some sort of accommodation.

“We’re still asking for some accommodation for our sweat lodge, whether that’s a park or some kind of green space across the road from this development,” he said.

Abourezk said the buffer zone should be no less than 500 feet because without it, there are going to be calls to the police about the noise.

He added that he is concerned that others may not know about their customs and could be frightened by the noise.

Abourezk hopes that the noise and singing will get others to come see the sweat lodge and experience it for themselves to gain a better understanding of Native culture.

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