National American Indian Court Judges Association

NAICJA Conferences and Trainings:

October 10-13, 2017
Isleta Pueblo, NM


Holistic Approach to Civil and Criminal Legal Assistance in Tribal Justice Systems
May 27 – 28, 2014
Marysville, WA 

Traditional Peacemaking: Exploring the Intersections between Tribal Courts and Peacemaking, including Alternatives to Detention
October 6-7, 2014
Catoosa, OK


2017 Webinars

August 22, 2017 - 12:00pm PT, 1:00pm MT, 2:00pm CT, 3:00pm ET

Tribal Healing to Wellness Courts bring together community-healing resources with the tribal justice process, using a team approach to achieve the physical and spiritual healing of the participant and the well-being of the community. This webinar will walk participants through the visioning and foundation planning process to begin the development and implementation of a Healing to Wellness Court.

Newly Posted Recorded Webinars!

April 24, 2017 - Tribal Justice Webinar - Peace Circles: A Virtual Circle on PeacemakingPeacemaking is not alternative dispute resolution to Native comm


it is the original, traditional
way our communities managed to work through disputes for centur
ies before tribal courts were created.
Because of natural limitations inherent in tribal courts, the
re is increasing interest in the continuation and
revitalization of those traditional ways.
This webinar explains how tribal traditions may h
 old a so
lution to some problems that have proven
especially difficult in tribal court, provide some examples of
how other tribes have had success, and
explain how this movement is part of a bigger picture, even intern
ationally, of how indigenous
communities are using their own wisdom to solve their problems. Spea
kers include well known and
seasoned Peacemakers including NARF Indigenous Peacemaking Initia
tive staff and advisory committee
Gina Jackson (Te-Moak Western Shoshone), Program Director,
National American Indian Court Judges Association
Faculty Presenters:
Hon. Cheryl Demmert Fairbanks (Tlingit/Tsimshian), Justic
e, Inter- Tribal Court of Appeals of Nevada
Hon. Robert Yazzie (Navajo), Chief Justice, Emeritus, N
avajo Nation Supreme Court
Brett Lee Shelton (Oglala Sioux Tribe), Staff Attorney,
Indigenous Peacemaking Initiative, Native
American Rights Fund, Tribal Appeals Court Justice
Professor Shawn Watts
herokee), Columbia Law School, Edson Queiroz Foundation Medi
ation Program
Additional materials
PowerPoint Presentation
Please contact us for any training or technical assistanc
e requests as NAICJA is a Bureau of Justice Assistance
Provider for CTAS Program Areas 3 and 7, Tribal Acce
ss to Justice Innovation, and TCCLA. We are also available
to discuss other training and technical assistance needs r
elated to other areas to strengthen tribal justice sys
Link for training and technical assistance (TTA) requests

2016 Webinars

1. Tribal Initiatives: Tribal Public Defense and How to Use Existing Resources to Provide Holistic Defense in Tribal Communities

2. Successfully Developing Tribal Justice Systems in a Public Law 280 State

3. EXPUNGEMENT AND INDIAN COUNTRY: The Need to Address Past Criminal Histories for a Better Future 

4. Building a Collaborative Court with Other Jurisdictions to Treat Nonviolent Tribal Adult Offender

CTAS Purpose Area 3 Training and Technical Assistance

Indian Country has longstanding criminal justice issues associated with substance abuse, and most recently, tribal communities have been forced to confront a rapid and unprecedented rise in methamphetamine, heroin, and opiate trafficking and abuse that has led to a dramatic increase in reservation crime.  The National American Indian Court Judges Association (NAICJA) is committed to customizing innovative, grassroots solutions by providing true peer-to-peer TTA that will address the unique interests of tribal sovereigns as defined by the community the justice system serves. The benefit of this approach is bringing together TTA providers who understand the insular nature of reservations and who are invested in the growth and wellbeing of tribal communities with current best practices and cultural competency.

NAICJA will provide TTA to Program Area 3 grantees in partnership with Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges, the Indigenous Peacemaking Initiative of the Native American Rights Fund, the Tribal Law and Policy Institute, Cheryl Fairbanks, LLC, the Hon. Lawrence Lujan, Columbia Law School, the National Center for State Courts, and the Tribal Judicial Institute. NAICJA’s goal is to provide Training and Technical Assistance that preserves each tribe’s own individual concepts of native law and support tribal self-determination by strengthening the justice system and the intervention programs designed to address alcohol and substance abuse.

Training objectives include:

1) Increasing the knowledge of criminal and tribal justice practitioners through in-person training, web based learning, distance learning including webinars and podcasts, and developing or revising training curricula;

2) Increasing all serviced tribal justice agency’s ability to solve problems and/or modify policies and practices; and,

3) Increase information provided to BJA and the criminal and tribal justice communities.

Services and Training and Technical Assistance will include:

  •     Publications, fact-sheets, and model codes,
  •     Code drafting assistance,  
  •     Peer-to-peer consultations,
  •     Listserv communications,
  •     Onsite TTA,
  •     Distance Learning TTA via teleconference, videoconference, and email,
  •     Interactive online training modules,
  •     Webinars,
  •     In-person training and needs assessments via a National Training Conference. Training and pre-conference topics will be related to tribal justice systems, including traditional justice, alcohol and substance abuse as it relates to public safety and victims’ services, law enforcement, prosecution, defense services/legal aid, offender reentry, tribal-federal-state intergovernmental collaboration, and justice information sharing.

Tribal Civil and Criminal Legal Assistance Program   

NAICJA is the Tribal Justice Training and Technical Assistance provider under the Bureau of Justice Assistance's (BJA) Tribal Civil and Criminal Legal Assistance (TCCLA) Program, offering training and technical assistance to TCCLA Grantees and Sub-grantee Legal Aid organizations. TTA Resources are available to 1) enhance the operations of tribal justice systems and improve access to those systems, and 2) provide training and technical assistance for development and enhancement of tribal justice systems.  Through a training and technical assistance request form NAICJA took requests for training from TCCLA grantees and Sub-grantee Leal Aid organizations.

Under this grant NAICJA developed the following deliverables:


An Overview of the Bureau of Justice Assistance’s Tribal Civil and Criminal Legal Assistance Program and Resources (download)

This publication provides an overview of the Tribal Civil and Criminal Legal Assistance Program (TCCLA). It identifies resources and eligibility guidelines for tribes seeking to obtain or provide civil and criminal legal assistance for their communities, explores program sustainment strategies, and outlines several promising practices for the provision of indigent legal assistance in tribal communities.

Report on the Traditional and Holistic Justice Roundtable (download)

Emerging Practices in Tribal Civil and Criminal Legal Assistance (download)

Collateral Consequences Infographic (download)

Seeking Assistance for Collateral Consequences (download)


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