ELL: Policy on Indigenous Peoples

Matthew McDaniel akha at LOXINFO.CO.TH
Thu Dec 2 23:37:56 UTC 1999

Dear Mr. Sundquist:

I would like to know your mission's policy on the rights of indigenous
peoples to their own culture and traditional practices as protected by
International Law and UN Documents?

It is my understanding that DAPA (Development and Agricultural Project
for Akha) and ACT (Akha Christian Training) here in Northern Thailand
are American Baptist Funded projects.  It is also my observation that
DAPA and ACT are actively involved in the displacement of Akha
Traditional Culture in ALL the villages in which they work, removal or
traditonal ornaments from homes, elimination of village gates and so

Your group is seen as one of the major villains in the destruction of
Akha Traditional Culture in northern Thailand and we are currently
discussing legal action against your mission with Lawyers in the US for
damages regarding a persistent pattern of  destruction to Akha
Traditional Culture.

Whatever your official policy is, the facts in the villages appears to
be quite different as no traditional culture remains in any of your host

It should also be mentioned that while your head office claims that the
missionary Paul Lewis operated his sterilization project during a time
in which he was not working for your mission, that temporary seperation
seems academic, since the sterilization project was pushed forward on
contacts that were made through working for your mission or several
missions. Assistance was provided by Christian Hospitals in Thailand
like McCormick in Chiangmai, it would appear.

To date there has been no effort to compensate the women who encountered
serious problems from these procedures.

Thankyou for providing me with information as to your organization's
policy on protecting the indigenous rights of the Akha people.

I look forward to observation and protection of these rights within the
Akha community at large, not just the Akha Christian Community.

Matthew McDaniel
Maesai, Chiangrai, Thailand


Matthew McDaniel
The Akha Heritage Foundation
386/3 Sailom Joi Rd
Maesai, Chiangrai, 57130
Mobile Phone Number:  Sometimes hard to reach while in Mountains.

US Address:

Donations by check or money order may be sent to:

The Akha Heritage Foundation
PO BOX 6073
Salem OR 97304

By Visa Card Secure Site:


Donations by direct banking can be transferred to:

Wells Fargo Bank
Akha Heritage Foundation
Acc. # 0081-889693
Keizer Branch # 1842  04
4990 N. River Road.
Keizer, Oregon,  97303 USA
ABA # 121000248

Or In Thailand:

Matthew  Duncan McDaniel
Acc. # 3980240778
Bangkok Bank Ltd.
Maesai Branch

Web Site:

mailto:akha at loxinfo.co.th

Discussion Groups:
akha at onelist.com
indigenousworld at onelist.com

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