Tribal Justice and Safety
Tribal Justice and Safety
FY 2015 Coordinated Tribal Assistance Solicitation (CTAS)
On November 20, 2014, the Department of Justice announced the opening of the grant solicitation period for comprehensive funding to support public safety, victim services, and crime prevention improvements in American Indian and Alaska Native communities. The Coordinated Tribal Assistance Solicitation (CTAS) is administered by the Justice Department’s Office of Justice Programs (OJP), Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS), and Office on Violence Against Women (OVW). The funding can be used to enhance law enforcement; bolster adult and juvenile justice systems; prevent and control juvenile delinquency; serve sexual assault, domestic violence, and elder victims; and support other efforts to combat crime. The department’s Fiscal Year (FY) 2015 Coordinated Tribal Assistance Solicitation (CTAS) can be viewed on the Open Solicitations page.
DOJ Statement of Principles
On December 3, 2014, at the White House Tribal Nations Conference, Attorney General Eric Holder announced that the Department of Justice has adopted a Statement of Principles to guide and inform all of the Department's interactions with federally recognized Indian tribes. Developed in consultation with the leaders of all 566 tribes, this Statement of Principles will memorialize the Department's determination to serve as a partner in fighting crime and enforcing the law in Indian country. As Attorney General Holder said in his remarks to tribal leaders, the Statement of Principles, “was meant to codify our intention to serve not as a patron, but as a partner, in Indian country – and to institutionalize our efforts to reinforce relationships, reform the criminal justice system, and aggressively protect civil rights and treaty rights. And it will serve as a guide for this Administration – and every Administration – as we seek to build the more perfect Union, and the more just society, that every individual deserves."
Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) 2013 Pilot Project
On March 7, 2013, President Obama signed into law the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013, or "VAWA 2013." VAWA 2013 recognizes tribes' inherent power to exercise special domestic violence criminal jurisdiction over certain defendants, regardless of their Indian or non-Indian status, who commit acts of domestic violence or dating violence or violate certain protection orders in Indian country. This new law generally takes effect on March 7, 2015, but also authorizes a voluntary "Pilot Project" to allow certain tribes to begin exercising special jurisdiction sooner. On February 6, 2014 the Pascua Yaqui Tribe of Arizona, the Tulalip Tribes of Washington, and the Umatilla Tribes of Oregon Information were selected for this Pilot Project. Information related to the Pilot Project, related consultations, and other resources, may be found on the VAWA Reauthorization 2013 page.
Policy Statement Regarding Marijuana Issues in Indian Country
On October 28, 2014, the Department of Justice issued a Policy Statement Regarding Marijuana Issues in Indian Country, to all United States Attorneys. With a number of states legalizing marijuana for use and production, some tribes have requested guidance on the enforcement of the Controlled Substance Act (CSA) on tribal lands by the United States Attorneys’ offices. With these requests in mind, the Attorney General’s Native American Issues Subcommittee has reviewed the Memorandum from the Deputy Attorney General, dated August 29, 2013, regarding marijuana enforcement (“Cole Memorandum”) and considered its impact on Indian Country. Indian Country includes numerous reservations and tribal lands with diverse sovereign governments, many of which traverse state borders and federal districts. Given this, the United States Attorneys recognize that effective federal law enforcement in Indian Country, including marijuana enforcement, requires consultation with our tribal partners in the districts and flexibility to confront the particular, yet sometimes divergent, public safety issues that can exist on any single reservation.
In June 2009, Attorney General Eric Holder launched a Department-wide initiative to enhance public safety in Indian County. Significant progress has been made since then. This document offers highlights of the Department's progress in the following areas: enhanced prosecution and training efforts; implementation of the Tribal Law and Order Act of 2010 (TLOA); grant opportunities; general litigation; civil rights; and outreach and consultation.
U.S. Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Ave., NW
Washington, DC 20530-0001
For questions about the Coordinated Tribal Solicitation Assistance Solicitation