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A Victim-Centered Approach to Crimes Against American Indian and Alaska Native Children

NCJ Number
Date Published
August 2008
223 pages
In presenting an approach for American-Indian and Alaska-Native tribes to consider in addressing crimes against their children, this guidebook draws on the laws of various nations and the cultural backgrounds of these Native tribes in presenting a victim-centered approach for protecting their children.
This guide is designed to be used by legal drafting committees of tribal governments when drafting new or amended tribal statutory provisions. These provisions may compose various parts of the tribal code, but are likely to be found in the criminal code, rules of court, and/or the rules of evidence. This is in contrast to provisions found in the dependency and/or delinquency codes (also known as "children's codes"). This guide is essentially an overview of the comparative laws and the underlying policies that impact the well-being of children from two perspectives: Federal anti-violence and victim-assistance legislation; and tribal law, including customs, traditions, and generally accepted practices that promote the well-being of children. The development of tribal law involves careful consideration of both the needs and values of the tribal community and researched and tested innovation in Federal and State law. Issues that may be important to tribes are a commitment to reinforce customs, traditions, and/or generally accepted local practices; the use of traditional or alternative dispute-resolution practices; a commitment to pursue traditional or therapeutic healing practices; recognition of traditional or respected authorities, leaders, or elders; and recognition of the role, duties, obligations, privileges, and rights of relatives of a certain type. Chapter exercises and a list of additional resources

Date Published: August 1, 2008