Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2023, $150,000)
The Qawalangin Tribe of Unalaska is a federally recognized tribe in rural Unalaska, Alaska (area codes 99685 and 99792). Qawalangin would like to develop a Comprehensive Tribal Justice Systems Strategic Plan that will minimize re-traumatization associated with the criminal justice process by providing support for victims, advocates, and service providers, empowering survivors as engaged participants in the process, and providing survivors an opportunity to play a role in seeing their assailants brought to justice. We would like to develop a Tribal Justice Program that emphasizes our cultural and social beliefs, both for the victim and the perpetrator, and empowers us to rehabilitate our tribal members before they are lost to the criminal justice system. The Tribe currently has no measures in place for Tribal justice, relying solely on the one Alaskan State Trooper located in Unalaska.
The Tribe will measure the following: number of meetings and amount of input from tribal members, positive and negative feedback from all outreach activities, summary of number of tribal victims by offense and the type of support they have received in the past, where the support was lacking (e.g., gaps in support) and support they would have liked to have in place; perpetrators by offenses and the number of tribal members who have been incarcerated, and drug and alcohol statistics. This data will be collected through anonymous online and paper surveys to all Tribal members, plus any data we can obtain from the Justice System or other state, federal or governmental agencies.
Success will be defined as an accepted Tribal Justice Program that identifies the specific concerns of the Tribe and proposed solutions, provides a template for providing alternatives to incarceration, rehabilitative and prevention programs that are rooted in the traditional values of the Unangan people, and include next steps that are practical, efficient, and obtainable. Another measure of success is the development of strategic partnerships that will enhance the Tribal Justice Program, such as the AK Vocational Rehab as a community partner in post-incarceration programs. There is already a Trilateral Agreement in place with the City of Unalaska, but the Tribe would want to obtain a Memorandum of Understanding from the current Superintendent regarding drug and alcohol prevention programs in education. Other partnerships may be established as we develop the Program.
This Department of Justice grant provides an opportunity to increase community justice planning while including culturally effective methodologies.