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Tribal Special U.S. Attorney Pilot Program Will Bridge Tribal and Federal Law Enforcement, Targeting Violence Against Women

Shoshanna Utchenik
ticklethewire.com

The Justice Department’s Office on Violence Against Women (OVW) announced Tuesday that four Native American Tribes will participate in a new program aimed at improving law enforcement coordination in cases of violence against Native women, which “has reached epidemic proportions” according to the OVW press release.

The pilot program supports four Tribal Special U.S. Attorneys (SAUSA’s) to serve as cross-designated prosecutors, working with both Tribal and Federal law enforcement. The recipients of these awards are:

  • Pueblo of Laguna in New Mexico
  • Fort Belknap Tribe in Montana
  • Winnebago Tribe in Nebraska
  • Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, in North Dakota and South Dakota

The program pays for training, salary and travel costs to selected applicants. SAUSA’s will maintain an active violence against women crimes caseload, in tribal and/or federal court, also promoting higher quality investigations, improved training and better inter-governmental communication.

OVW Director Bea Hanson stated in the press release,  “Restoring safety for Native women requires the type of sustained cooperation between the federal and tribal justice systems that we see in the jurisdictions participating in our Tribal SAUSA project.”


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