DOJ Coordinated Tribal Assistance Solicitation (CTAS) Funding Opportunities

The solicitation will provide instructions on how federally recognized tribal governments and tribal consortia can apply for funding.


The Department of Justice’s Office of Justice Programs, Office on Violence Against Women, and Office of Community Oriented Policing Services post new solicitations for grant funding opportunities daily, many of which are open to Native American Tribes and Tribal Consortia, as well as Alaska Native Villages. Funding opportunities can be found online at the URLs provided below:

FACT SHEET: Biden-⁠Harris Administration Announces New Actions to Support Indian Country and Native Communities Ahead of the Administration’s Second Tribal Nations Summit

This week, President Biden is hosting the second Tribal Nations Summit of his Administration to help foster Nation-to-Nation relationships and provide Tribal leaders with an opportunity to engage directly with senior Administration officials. Since taking office, President Biden has prioritized relationships with Tribal Nations that are built on respect for Tribal sovereignty and self-governance, honoring federal trust and treaty responsibilities, protecting Tribal homelands, and conducting regular, meaningful, and robust consultation. The President has also advanced an economic agenda that includes historic levels of funding specifically for Tribal communities and Native people, including $32 billion in the American Rescue Plan (ARP), $13 billion in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL), and $700 million in the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA).

As Tribal leaders gather in Washington at the Department of the Interior for the first in-person Summit of this Administration, the President and members of the Cabinet will be announcing a number of new actions that will build on the progress that has already been made, create new opportunities for Tribal consultation and input, and produce lasting changes that will impact the lives of Tribal leaders and their citizens for generations to come.

  • Presidential Memorandum on Uniform Standards for Tribal Consultation. The President will sign a new Presidential Memorandum establishing uniform standards to be implemented across all federal agencies regarding how Tribal consultations are conducted. These standards respond to input received from Tribal Nations regarding Tribal consultation and ensure more consistency in how agencies initiate, provide notice for, conduct, record, and report on Tribal consultations. The Presidential Memorandum will also require annual training regarding Tribal consultation for federal employees who work with Tribal Nations or on policies with Tribal implications.
  • New Tribal Consultation Policies. To align with the new Presidential Memorandum on Uniform Standards for Tribal Consultation, and to advance the Administration’s goals of improving Tribal consultation across the federal government, nine agencies will implement new or updated Tribal consultation policies. These include: (1) new policies announced today by the Department of the Interior (DOI), Department of Justice (DOJ), Department of Transportation (DOT), and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA); and (2) new policies to be released in the coming months from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Department of the Treasury, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), and the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation (ACHP).
  • New Best-Practices Report for Tribal Treaty and Reserved Rights. Today, 17 federal agencies, coordinated through the White House Council on Native American Affairs (WHCNAA), are releasing a new best-practices report to integrate Tribal treaty and reserved rights into agency decision-making processes. This best-practices report was developed in consultation with Tribal Nations and implements the agencies’ Memorandum of Understanding Regarding Interagency Coordination and Collaboration for the Protection of Tribal Treaty Rights and Reserved Rights. The agencies include ACHP, Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ), Department of Commerce (DOC), Department of Defense (DOD), Department of Energy (DOE), DOI, DOJ, Department of Labor (DOL), Department of State (DOS), DOT, DHS, Department of Education (ED), Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), Office of Personnel Management (OPM), Department of Agriculture (USDA), and Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).
  • Implementing Tribal Co-Management and Co-Stewardship of Federal Lands and Waters. President Biden has recognized the importance of increasing Tribal participation in the management and stewardship of federal lands and waters of significance to Tribal communities. In 2021, USDA and DOI signed Joint Secretarial Order 3403, committing to Tribal co-stewardship, including through written co-stewardship agreements with Tribal Nations. In 2022, they delivered on this commitment: in total, USDA Forest Service and DOI signed over 20 new co-stewardship agreements with Tribes to further co-stewardship goals, with more than 60 additional agreements under various stages of review.

    Today, the Department of Commerce is announcing that it will formally join in these co-stewardship efforts by signing onto Joint Secretarial Order 3403. This commitment furthers an all-of-government approach to co-stewardship, and ensures that additional agencies—like NOAA—will further co-stewardship goals in their management of waters, fisheries, and other resources of significance and value to Tribes.

  • New Indigenous Knowledge Guidance for Federal Agencies. The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) and CEQ are announcing first-of-its-kind government-wide guidance for federal agencies to recognize and include Indigenous Knowledge in federal research, policy, and decision-making. Initiated at the 2021 Tribal Nations Summit, the new White House guidance was developed with federal agencies, in consultation with Tribes and engagement with Indigenous peoples, to elevate Indigenous observations, oral and written knowledge, practices, and beliefs that promote environmental sustainability and the responsible stewardship of natural and cultural resources in federal policymaking.
  • Access to Capital in Indian Country. The Small Business Administration (SBA), in coordination with WHCNAA and with involvement from DOC, DOE, DOI, Treasury, USDA, OMB, and the White House Council of Economic Advisers, is announcing a new access to capital initiative with the goal of increasing awareness, access, and utilization of financing opportunities for Tribal Nations. Implementing part one of the plan—awareness—will entail identifying and summarizing all loan and financing programs available to Tribes, including through ARP, BIL, the CHIPS and Science Act, and the IRA. Part two of the plan—access—will involve identifying barriers to capital and summarizing policy, regulatory, and statutory solutions to increase access to federal financing programs. Part three of the plan—utilization—will involve increasing utilization of federal capital programs by establishing baselines of use and setting metrics to improve the utilization rate of the programs.
  • Implementation of the Indian Energy Purchase Preference at Federal FacilitiesTo ensure that investments in the clean energy economy reach Tribal lands, DOE—in coordination with WHCNAA and with involvement from DOD and the General Services Administration (GSA)—will launch a new initiative to increase federal agencies’ use of Tribal energy through purchasing authority established by statute. Title V of the Energy Policy Act of 2005 established for federal agencies a preference for purchasing electricity and other energy products from Indian Tribes and Tribal enterprises. That authority has been unused for over 17 years. The Administration will hold listening sessions with Tribal Nations to better understand the market conditions for Tribes and Tribal majority-owned businesses developing carbon pollution-free electricity (CFE). DOD will integrate the Indian Energy Purchase Preference into electricity procurement strategies. GSA will lead a pilot focused on Tribal energy production to develop procurement strategies. Agencies will develop training and resources for Tribes and Tribal majority-owned businesses to foster technical expertise in the development of CFE projects, improve awareness of the Preference, and encourage partnerships for CFE development.
  • Electric Vehicle (EV) Initiative for Tribal Nations. BIL includes funding to secure an American EV supply chain and to build out the first-ever nationwide public EV charging network of 500,000 EV chargers. Today, the Administration is announcing an EV Initiative for Tribal Nations to ensure that Tribal Nations and Native communities are part of the EV future of the country. Ten federal agencies, including DOT, DOE, DOI, DOL, ED, EPA, HHS, HUD, GSA, and USDA, coordinated through WHCNAA, are supporting this effort, which will include:
    • mapping the proposed deployment of EV infrastructure;
    • prioritizing projects that serve rural and underserved areas, including Tribal lands and communities;
    • providing technical assistance to take advantage of funding opportunities;
    • prioritizing Tribal, Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA)-funded, and other schools on Indian lands for replacing diesel school buses with low or zero emission school buses within EPA’s Clean School Bus Program;
    • providing assistance to Tribes for the purchase or lease of EV fleet vehicles;
    • consulting with Tribes to consider updates to the state certification process to improve Tribal input into state plans;
    • releasing a new Toolkit that will provide Tribes the information they need to start planning and implementing EV infrastructure projects;
    • expanding training, teaching, and employment opportunities for Tribal members within the EV market; and
    • supporting Tribal Nations’ roles in the EV battery supply chain.
  • Implementation of the Buy Indian Act. President Biden committed to strengthening implementation of the Buy Indian Act, which provides for special federal contracting preferences by DOI and HHS to procure supplies, services, and construction from Native-owned businesses. The federal government is the largest purchaser of goods and services in the country, buying everything from software and building construction to financial and asset management—making its procurement a powerful tool to advance equity and build wealth in underserved communities.

    Today, DOI is announcing its goal of awarding 75% of contract dollars from Indian Affairs (including BIA, Bureau of Indian Education, and Bureau of Trust Funds Administration) and 10% of contract dollars across the rest of the Department to Native-owned businesses, using its authority under the Buy Indian Act. The Indian Health Service (IHS) is announcing its goal of 20%. These targets will raise Buy Indian Act utilization rates at the agencies, result in hundreds of millions of dollars being spent in Indian country, and advance the President’s effort to increase the share of government-wide contract dollars going to small disadvantaged businesses (SDBs) by 50% by 2025.

  • 10-Year National Plan on Native Language Revitalization. The WHCNAA Education Committee is releasing a draft 10-Year National Plan on Native Language Revitalization. The Administration will consult with Tribal Nations on the draft and finalize the plan in 2023. This plan will be built upon four pillars: (1) Awareness—creating national awareness on the importance of Native languages, the current crises of Native language loss, and the urgency for immediate action; (2) Recognition/Affirmation—establishing a formal policy recognizing the role that the United States government played in erasing Native languages and affirming the need for federal resources and support for Native language revitalization; (3) Integration—integrating Native language revitalization in mainstream society, including in federal policies, and outlining the need to create Native language revitalization ecosystems; and (4) Support—identifying funding, including federal and philanthropic sources for Native language revitalization.

Other announcements that are being made at the Summit this year are included below. Additionally, the White House is releasing a comprehensive Progress Report that details actions that have been taken across the Administration over the past two years. The full report can be read here.

Additional Announcements That Will Be Made During the Tribal Nations Summit

Strengthening and Standardizing Tribal Consultation

New Tribal Advisory Committees and Positions. USDA and HUD will establish their first-ever Tribal Advisory Committees to ensure that Tribal leaders have direct and consistent contact with federal agency decisionmakers and to institutionalize Tribal voices within policymaking.

DOD is establishing a permanent position to serve as the Senior Advisor and Liaison for Native American Affairs within the Office of the Secretary of Defense. This position will provide more permanence and certainty to Tribal Nations working with DOD. The Senior Advisor and Liaison for Native American Affairs will be responsible for advising the Department on matters concerning interactions with Native Americans, including federally recognized Tribes and Native Hawaiian Organizations.

NOAA will add two new Tribal Coordinators to its ranks in Alaska and the North Atlantic region. The Alaska Tribal Coordinator will focus on commercial fisheries and establish strong cross-cultural relationships with Tribes in Alaska. The North Atlantic Region Tribal Coordinator will engage with North Atlantic Tribes and affiliated Tribal organizations on ocean policy issues.

For the first time in its almost 30-year history, AmeriCorps—the federal agency for national service and volunteerism—will create a new senior political appointee position for a Strategic Advisor for Native American Affairs. This position will lead the agency’s engagement with Indian country; carry out the agency’s Native American Action Plan to reduce barriers to service and increase investment in Tribes and Native communities; and develop, implement, and evaluate initiatives to further Native American participation in AmeriCorps’ programs and endeavors.

These agency efforts build upon this year’s successes of establishing new Tribal Advisory Committees at DOI and DHS; establishing a new Office of Tribal and Native Affairs at Treasury; and appointing the first-ever Tribal Policy Advisor at OMB.

New Consultation Trainings and Guidebooks. The Economic Development Administration (EDA) at DOC will launch a new staff training series on working with Tribal communities. The training will ensure that EDA staff recognize and respect Tribal self-government and sovereignty, honor Tribal treaty and reserved rights, and strive to meet the federal government’s trust responsibility toward Tribes. In December 2022, DOD will publish a Tribal Protocols Guidebook, which will serve as a resource guide for DOD components on how to build and enhance relationships with Tribal governments.

Tribal Homelands

New Regulations and Process for Fee to Trust Land Acquisitions. DOI will publish a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on proposed amendments to 25 C.F.R. Part 151, which governs fee-to-trust land (or “land into trust”) acquisitions that transfer land title to the United States to be held in trust for the benefit of an individual Indian or Tribe, including in Alaska. The process is critical for Tribal sovereignty, self-determination, preservation of history and culture, economic development, and the well-being of Tribal citizens. This process is also helping right the wrongs of past policies like allotment, which removed millions of acres of land from Tribal ownership and federal protection. In line with President Biden’s promise to make it easier for Tribes to place land into trust, Interior’s proposed amendments to the fee-to-trust regulations provide for a more efficient, less cumbersome, and less expensive fee-to-trust process, including for conservation purposes. The Notice of Proposed Rulemaking incorporates feedback from Tribal consultations earlier in the year, and DOI will hold Tribal consultations on the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking in December 2022.

New Regulations to Protect Tribal Reserved Rights. EPA will propose revisions to the federal water quality standards (WQS) rule, clarifying that, when developing new and revised WQS, states must evaluate Tribal reserved rights to an aquatic and/or aquatic-dependent resource in the area or downstream of the area. If a right exists, states must evaluate available data to inform the level of water quality necessary to protect that Tribal reserved right, and, if necessary, revise their WQS to ensure protection.

New Baseline Water Quality Standards Rule. EPA is developing a proposed rule to establish baseline WQS for Indian reservation waters that do not have Clean Water Act WQS in place. This action would narrow the Clean Water Act protection gap in Indian country and safeguard water quality until Tribes obtain authority to adopt Clean Water Act WQS themselves.

Appendix C Rulemaking Effort. The U.S. Army has historically used USACE Appendix C for actions affecting historic properties under Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act. Tribal Nations and Native Hawaiian communities have, for many years, complained that Appendix C does not comply with Section 106 procedures. USACE is announcing a rulemaking effort proposing to rescind Appendix C. USACE would instead rely on ACHP’s regulations and joint USACE/ACHP guidance for implementation of Section 106. The Army intends to coordinate closely with Tribal Nations and ACHP throughout this rulemaking effort.

New Regulations to Consider Tribal Benefits in Water Resources Development Projects. USACE will establish new agency procedures to consider a wider range of Tribal and public benefits of water resource development projects. USACE is the nation’s largest water resource developer, and the agency’s current procedures for development projects focus primarily on achieving national economic development benefits. Under the new procedures, the agency will take into account additional public benefits of water resources investments, including whether an investment achieves social and environmental benefits for a Tribe.

Domestic Mining Law Reform– Improving Tribal Engagement. This year, DOI launched an interagency working group to reform hardrock mining laws and policies to ensure that mining activities are conducted using strong environmental, sustainability, safety, Tribal consultation, and community engagement standards. Today, DOI and USDA are implementing a number of recommendations that will be part of a forthcoming report from the Interagency Working Group on Mining Regulations, Laws, and Permitting, including (1) recommendations on ways to ensure Tribes are engaged earlier during the development of mining proposals on public lands; (2) providing Tribes a seat at the table in discussions regarding mining proposals; and (3) improving consideration and protection of Tribal interests and resources as mining decisions are being made. Several steps will be implemented by DOI’s Bureau of Land Management, such as notifying Tribes when exploration work is about to occur and inviting Tribes to join pre-application meetings with mine developers. Complimentary to the efforts described above, the U.S. Federal Permitting Improvement Steering Council (Permitting Council) will set aside $5 million for Federally recognized Tribes in order to enhance Tribal engagement in the permitting review and authorization process for FAST-41 covered projects. The Permitting Council will issue a Dear Tribal Leader Letter to initiate consultations starting in February to design the program.

Agency Implementation of Indigenous Knowledge (IK). In support of the Administration’s IK initiative, DOI and ACHP are publishing new IK guidance. DOI is instituting Departmental guidance for DOI bureaus to support collaborative engagement with Tribes and the use and protection of IK. ACHP is developing a policy regarding the role IK has in historic preservation to advance greater incorporation of and consideration for IK throughout the review process under Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act.

USDA to Fund IK Research Track at AISES. In further support of the Administration’s IK Initiative, USDA will partner with the American Indian Science and Engineering Society (AISES) to fund an IK research track at the annual AISES conference for students who conduct science and engineering research at the intersection of western science and IK.

Climate Change

Tribal Climate Resilience and Community-Driven Relocation. DOI is announcing new community-driven relocation demonstration projects. This funding represents a vital investment to address the growing risks faced by many Tribes as a result of climate change. DOI, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the Denali Commission, and partnering federal agencies, will coordinate with these Tribes to support their relocation efforts and address the numerous and costly aspects of relocating entire communities. BIL funding will also support Tribal climate resilience through increased funding for the BIA Annual Awards Program that is available to all Tribes facing climate-related risks.

Additional Support for Community-Driven Relocation. USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) Watershed and Flood Prevention Operations Program will allocate $40 million from BIL to assist with community-driven relocation of Alaska Native Villages due to climate change, erosion, and flooding. Seven villages have been chosen from a set of the highest-risk villages. This funding will cover feasibility studies, watershed planning and National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) compliance, and move design. USDA will coordinate with DOI’s community-driven relocation program in providing this funding.

New Director of Alaska Native Climate Change Initiatives. NOAA is using Climate and Equity Pilot Project funds to establish a director of Tribal climate change initiatives position at the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium (ANTHC), a non-profit Tribal health organization serving Alaska Native and American Indian people in Alaska. The director will lead a landscape assessment of Tribal climate change adaptation activities in Alaska and establish a baseline understanding of Tribal climate change challenges and responses. In addition, the director will lead the formulation and launch of an Alaska Tribal Climate Change Advisory Group to ensure that Tribal climate change efforts across the state are led and prioritized by Alaska Native people.

Economic Development, Energy, and Infrastructure

Tribal Clean Energy Transition Initiative. DOE is launching a new inter-agency initiative to support Tribes transitioning from conventional to clean energy development. DOE will enter into memoranda of understanding (MOUs) with interested Tribes to establish frameworks for collaboration. DOE will coordinate and collaborate with WHCNAA and the Interagency Working Group on Coal Power Plant Communities and Economic Revitalization. Active involvement from DOI, DOT, USDA, DOC, ED, and DOL will support and strengthen this initiative.

Renewable Energy Accelerated Deployment Initiative for Indian Country (READI). DOI is announcing the Renewable Energy Accelerated Deployment Initiative for Indian Country (READI) to centralize Native renewable energy expertise and expedite renewable energy resource development on Indian lands. The initiative will: streamline and advance renewable energy development in departmental policies, procedures, and regulations, including leasing; solicit and receive Tribal government advice on renewable energy resource needs and priorities; and incentivize renewable energy development on Indian lands through technical assistance and consensus-based updates to regulations and other legal authorities.

New Gaming Regulations. DOI will publish a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on proposed amendments to regulations governing the review and approval of Tribal-state gaming compacts (found at 25 C.F.R. Part 293). Indian gaming is a vital economic and community development tool that has funded strong Tribal governments and significantly advanced Tribal self-determination. The proposed amendments seek to improve the negotiation process for Tribal-state compacts by clarifying allowable topics of negotiation, better defining key terms, and clearly outlining when DOI must review a gaming compact. The Notice of Proposed Rulemaking incorporates feedback received during Tribal consultations, and DOI will hold additional Tribal consultations on the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking in December 2022.

Enhancing Tribal Participation in the 477 Program. Last month, 12 federal agencies signed a new Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) to implement the Tribal “PL477 Program,” named for Public Law 102-477. PL477 allows Tribal governments to consolidate important federal funding for job training, workforce development, and other economic development purposes into a single plan, with a single reporting requirement, administered by DOI. PL477 eases the burden on Tribes and makes it easier to provide federally funded employment and job training services based on unique Tribal goals. DOI and DOL will develop guidance to assist Tribes in using the new 477 MOA to boost their employment, job training, and related services. This guidance will help Tribes (1) identify funding eligible for consolidation and (2) develop and submit 477 plans for approval.

SBA Funding for Native American Serving Organizations. SBA is announcing $1.2 million in funding for seven organizations providing community-level training and technical assistance for Native American small businesses and entrepreneurs across the country. SBA now has more Native American-focused partners than ever before, thanks in part to the Community Navigators Pilot Program, an ARP initiative designed to reduce barriers faced by underrepresented and underserved entrepreneurs.

Consultation on Treasury Tribal Advisory Committee’s Dual Taxation Report. Dual taxation on Tribal lands (i.e., taxes levied by both state and Tribal governments on the same persons, properties, or transactions) inhibits Tribal economic development and economic sustainability because it diverts tax revenue from Tribes to non-Tribal governments and deters private sector capital investment in Indian country. The Treasury Tribal Advisory Committee (TTAC) issued a report in 2021 that documented the effects of dual taxation and provided recommendations for federal partners. Due to increased Tribal leader interest, and to ensure a robust evaluation of these recommendations, Treasury will commence a second consultation on this report and address feedback during the first public TTAC meeting in 2023.

Tribal Transit Symposium. Today, DOT is announcing its first-ever Tribal Transit Symposium, which will be held in 2023. This symposium will provide Tribes the opportunity to: meet with Federal Transit Administration leadership; receive technical assistance; learn about funding opportunities under BIL; and learn about the Tribal Transit Program, which funds planning, capital, and operating assistance for Tribal public transit services.

Tribal Aviation Symposium. Today, DOT is announcing that it will join the Federal Aviation Administration in co-hosting its second Tribal Aviation Symposium in 2023. This symposium will be open to all 574 Tribes and will cover grant applications, Tribal access to airports, commercial sea plan access, drone usage, and Tribal youth engagement and education. Technical assistance will be provided to Tribal airport owners and operators on airport improvement plans and financial reimbursement and reporting procedures.

Improving Highway Safety in Indian Country. Motor vehicle crashes are a leading cause of death for American Indians and Alaska Natives DOT’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is leading a multi-agency effort to address highway safety in Indian country. In 2023, NHTSA will expand the initiative. This campaign will bring awareness to the higher rates of fatal crashes in Indian country and will include safety strategies for Tribes. NHTSA will partner with BIA’s Office of Public Safety and Justice to conduct outreach to Tribes for the campaign.

Tribal Maritime Roundtable. DOT is announcing that its Maritime Administration (MARAD) will host its first-ever Tribal Maritime Roundtable in 2023 to update Tribes on the Port Infrastructure Development Program, the America’s Marine Highway Program, and workforce development opportunities in the maritime sector.

Tribal Broadband and Spectrum

DOI-FCC-DOC Electromagnetic Spectrum MOU. DOI, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), and DOC are announcing a new MOU to advance consistent interagency coordination to promote electromagnetic spectrum access and deployment of broadband and other wireless services on Tribal lands. The MOU will provide a framework for exploring new opportunities for tribal policy development for wireless services, including spectrum access and data exchange, in support of Tribes’ political and economic self-determination.

Establishment of a DOI Office of Indigenous Communications & Technology (OICT). The new office will assist Tribal Nations and Tribal entities in managing, developing and maintaining broadband infrastructure, new electromagnetic spectrum leasing mechanisms, and in providing technical assistance for the establishment of wireless, digital, and technological projects on Tribal lands. The office will also focus on the development of new technological services to facilitate new partnerships between Tribes and the tech industry for the advancement of Tribal self-governance initiatives, including EV; light detection and ranging (LiDAR) used for mapping, surveying and other services; and opportunities for Indigenous participation in data science, coding, and software engineering.

Public Safety and Justice                  

New Memorandum of Understanding to Improve Law Enforcement Coordination in Indian Country. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and DOI’s Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs, on behalf of the BIA Office of Justice Services (BIA-OJS), will sign a new Memorandum of Understanding, which will be the first update of the agencies’ MOU since the early 1990s. The new MOU will clarify investigative roles, define best practices, and recommend training for personnel working in Indian Country, a significant reform to improve coordination between the two law enforcement agencies that share responsibility for investigating Indian Country crimes, including missing or murdered Indigenous people (MMIP) investigations.

Improving Case Intake for MMIP Cases. The FBI and BIA-OJS will embed a criminal investigator and program analysts from DOI’s Missing and Murdered Unit into the FBI headquarters-level unit in charge of Indian country to facilitate MMIP case intake. Having MMIP-experienced staff involved at inception will expedite and enhance law enforcement’s approach to MMIP cases from the outset.

New National Native American Outreach Services Liaison. DOJ is announcing its first-ever National Native American Outreach Services Liaison. This position was created as part of the President’s Executive Order on Improving Public Safety and Criminal Justice and Addressing the Crisis of Missing and Murdered Indigenous People. The Liaison will build on and enhance existing protocols for effective, consistent, and culturally and linguistically appropriate communication with families of victims and work to ensure that victims of crime have a voice during every step of the criminal justice process where the federal government has jurisdiction.

Updated U.S. Attorney’s Offices Operational Plans. DOJ is announcing that U.S. Attorney’s Offices within Indian country will finalize their operational plans to better promote public safety in Tribal communities. On July 13, 2022, the Deputy Attorney General issued a directive to all U.S. Attorneys and law enforcement agencies that made it a priority to address the disproportionately high rates of violence experienced by American Indians and Alaska Natives, and relatedly, the high rates of Indigenous persons reported missing. Consistent with that directive and Savanna’s Act, U.S. Attorneys Offices have, in consultation with Tribes located in their district, worked to develop guidelines for cases involving missing or murdered Indigenous persons and to update their operational plans to improve coordination, better support victims, and address other pressing public safety issues.

2023 Environmental Justice Convening. Next year, DOJ will host an Environmental Justice Convening with federal officials and Tribal leaders to develop strategies to prevent and address harms caused by environmental crimes, pollution, and climate change in Indian country. The convening will incorporate recommendations from Tribal leaders gathering during Tribal listening sessions in late 2022 and early 2023.

Expansion of the National Human Trafficking Hotline to address MMIP. To address the MMIP epidemic and reduce factors for victimization, HHS will ensure that the National Human Trafficking Hotline is able to make referrals to mental health organizations and health care providers with the appropriate expertise to work with human trafficking victims, including those who have cultural competency for working with Indigenous peoples of North America and the Pacific. It will do so by: (1) consulting with the National Human Trafficking Hotline on the status of referrals with cultural competencies; and (2) expanding outreach to providers with trauma-informed training and culturally and linguistically appropriate competencies for inclusion in the Hotline referral directory.

Education and Native Languages

Expanding and Implementing the Native Languages MOA. In November 2021, 10 federal agencies, coordinated through WHCNAA, signed a Native Languages MOA to promote collaboration on programming, resource development, and policy related to Native languages. The number of agencies will more than double, with 13 additional agencies now joining the MOA and committing to advance its Native languages objectives. These additional agencies include ACHP, DOC, DOE, DHS, DOJ, DOL, EPA, OPM, SBA, DOS, VA, the Social Security Administration, and OMB. Implementation of the MOA will be coordinated through the WHCNAA Education Committee and the White House Initiative on Advancing Educational Equity, Excellence, and Economic Opportunity for Native Americans and Strengthening Tribal Colleges and Universities.

New Resources Guide for Native Languages. Today, the National Endowment for the Arts, in coordination with the WHCNAA Education Committee, is releasing an updated Resources Guide that provides a comprehensive overview of federal funding sources, including agency contacts and program descriptions, that can be used to support Native arts and cultural activities, including Native language revitalization.

New Research on Native Language Retention and Revitalization. The White House Initiative on Advancing Educational Equity, Excellence, and Economic Opportunity for Native Americans and Strengthening Tribal Colleges and Universities—established by President Biden’s Executive Order 13592—will prepare a summary of research that explores educational attainment and Native language retention and revitalization to identify evidence-based approaches that will inform the 10-Year National Plan on Native Language Revitalization.

National, Comprehensive Study of Native American Education. In 2023, ED will launch a national, comprehensive study of Native American education in both public and BIE settings in accordance with the 10-Year National Plan on Native Language Revitalization. This national study will examine the educational landscape from birth through lifelong learning and provide baseline data from which the National Plan will derive measurable outcomes.

National Native American Language Resource Center. ED will launch the National Native Language Resource Center and conduct Tribal consultation and targeted listening sessions with Tribal Nations and language communities beginning in early 2023 to ensure its meaningful design. The center will serve as a comprehensive online resource to support American Indian, Alaska Native, and Native Hawaiian schools, language programs, and individuals engaged in the reclamation, revitalization, preservation, and instruction of American Indian, Alaska Native, and Native Hawaiian languages.

Native Language Grant Requirements. ED and DOI will review federal grant requirements and suggest mechanisms to award additional grant points for applications that integrate, support, and promote Native language revitalization.

Federal Indian Boarding School Oral History Project. In June 2021, the Secretary of the Interior launched the Federal Indian Boarding School Initiative (BSI) to shed light on the troubled history of federal Indian boarding school policies and their legacy for Indigenous peoples. In May 2022, the Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs released Volume 1 of the investigative report called for by the Initiative. To implement one of the recommendations of that report, and with new funding announced today from the National Endowment for the Humanities, DOI will begin the first-ever oral history project for survivors in 2023. Indigenous communities requested this project as a way to tell the stories of their citizens.

Native Language Voting Rights Reports. Today, DOI published translations of the landmark report of the Interagency Steering Group on Native American Voting Rights. The report followed consultations with Tribal Nations and listening sessions with Native Hawaiians, organizations advocating for improved Tribal voting rights, and state and local election officials in jurisdictions with sizable Native populations. Those sessions revealed recurring, unnecessary, and unacceptable impediments to the franchise. The steering group’s subsequent report chronicled the barriers Native voters face and recommended actions for policymakers at every level to help break these barriers down. Further, the Department took the unique step of translating the report itself into six Native languages, in writing and by audio, reflecting the regional consultation structure: Navajo, Yup’ik, Ojibwe, Cherokee, Lakota, and Native Hawaiian.

New Tribal Early Learning Initiative. In support of the Administration’s goal to increase the percentage of Native American children and families who participate in high-quality early childhood programs and services, the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) at HHS will launch a new Tribal Early Learning Initiative (TELI). TELI will enable Tribes to improve collaboration and coordination across Tribal early childhood programs (including Head Start, child care, home visiting, and preschool) to support stronger Tribal early childhood systems. ACF initiated TELI in response to feedback from Tribal leaders during Nation-to-Nation consultation. Forty-nine Tribes will participate in a broad network of Tribes working to coordinate their programs (the TELI Network) and eight Tribes will participate in a more intensive peer learning community (the TELI Collaborative).

Education Partnerships. Today, DOI is announcing that BIE will partner with the Trust for Public Lands’ Community Schoolyards Project to create outdoor educational spaces to support healthy Tribal communities. The partnership will initially identify six to nine BIE schools for such “Community Schoolyard” projects. The schoolyards will be designed in collaboration with students and community members to reflect the values and culture of each community.

National Fund for Excellence in American Indian Education. Today, DOI is renewing the National Fund for Excellence in American Indian Education, a congressionally chartered, but long unused, non-profit organization to support educational opportunities for American Indian students attending BIE schools. DOI is working to re-invigorate the organization to support Tribally led education initiatives, including the Department’s work on Native language revitalization.


New Strategy for Tribes to Access the Strategic National Stockpile. Today, HHS is sharing its next steps in its draft strategy for Tribes to access the Strategic National Stockpile. HHS will initiate Tribal Consultation on a strategy that describes how IHS, Tribal health departments, and Urban Indian Organizations (UIOs) can access the lifesaving federal repository of drugs and medical supplies to support Native communities, prevent supply shortages, and reduce health disparities.

New Policy Clarifying Data Sharing with Tribal Epidemiology Centers for HHS Agencies. HHS will announce a new Tribal Data Sharing Policy in 2023 that will include guidance and a streamlined process for Tribal Epidemiology Centers to request and access critical health data at HHS components. This policy responds to recommendations by the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) as well as requests from Tribal leaders to improve data sharing at IHS and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). In development of this new policy, HHS will be examining the broader impact of Tribal access to health data as well.

Bison Initiative to Further Food Sovereignty. USDA and DOI are announcing new efforts to help restore bison populations and promote species conservation. A new USDA initiative will include cooperative agreements with the InterTribal Buffalo Council to prepare and release: (1) a handbook to provide best practices for humane handling and harvesting of bison in the field; and (2) a hands-on curriculum and training focused on food sovereignty and food safety. USDA will also consider actions to remove barriers to serving Tribally produced bison in child nutrition programs. BIA’s Office of Trust Services will create a Branch of Bison Restoration to assist Tribes in developing new bison herds.

Nutrition and Agriculture. DOI announced Indigenous Food Hubs for BIE-operated schools and BIA-operated detention centers at the White House Conference on Hunger, Nutrition, and Health in September 2022. To further this work, DOI is committed to adopting Indigenous-based land and agricultural management practices and metrics for BIA-managed lands. Today, USDA and DOI are announcing that they will hold listening sessions to receive feedback on such practices, and on barriers and solutions to inform guidance on improving sustainability for flora and fauna biodiversity and sound Indigenous agricultural practices. Additionally, USDA will promote the use of traditional foods in school meals and work with state agencies and schools to overcome food safety, crediting, or other barriers to serving traditional foods in school meals programs.

Hall of Tribal Nations at HHS. HHS is unveiling its plans for a new Hall of Tribal Nations at HHS headquarters in Washington, D.C. to increase visibility of Tribal Nations as Nation-to-Nation partners in providing health and human services in their communities. The Hall of Tribal Nations will be complete in early 2023 with inaugural Tribal flags representing the members of the Secretary’s Tribal Advisory Committee.


New Section 184 Regulations to Increase Home Ownership. HUD will publish a new Section 184 Indian Home Loan Guarantee Program proposed rule that modernizes the program and provides more homeownership opportunities in Indian country. The rule will: (1) codify program requirements governing underwriting, loan origination, claims, and more; and (2) introduce much needed certainty into the program to attract more participating lenders. The proposed rule would, among other things, authorize HUD to establish a minimum level of lending on trust land.

New Housing for Skilled Workers. Skilled workers are vital to any community’s overall well-being and ability to achieve sustainable economic growth. Unfortunately, some Tribal communities—particularly those located in very remote areas—have historically struggled to attract skilled workers because of a lack of available housing. To address this issue, HUD will begin to implement a new Section 184 demonstration program that specifically targets Tribes and Tribally Designated Entities to use Section 184 financing for the construction of rental housing for skilled workers in Tribal communities. HUD will issue guidance outlining programmatic requirements and begin to make this loan product available to Tribes in 2023.

Native American Veteran Homelessness Initiative. VA, HHS, and HUD, through the WHCNAA Health Committee, are announcing an interagency initiative to increase access to care and services for American Indian and Alaska Native Veterans experiencing or at risk of homelessness in urban areas. The initiative will involve partnerships with UIOs and focus on intake and referral services to ensure that Native veterans are aware of and have access to available resources.

International and Border Issues

Reciprocal Indigenous Mobility. DHS will work to identify and remove barriers that impede the access of Tribal Nations and Alaska Native Villages to border-crossing and immigration rights and benefits. These rights and benefits are needed to revitalize, strengthen, and sustain their familial, Tribal, Native language, cultural, and religious and spiritual ties. Achieving reciprocal Indigenous mobility will directly support the aims of the Native Language MOA and the 10-Year National Plan on Native Language Revitalization. DHS will provide a report to the White House Domestic Policy Council within 180 days of the Tribal Nations Summit describing its progress and recommending any new operational procedures or legal authorities necessary to support these efforts.

Indigenous Peoples’ Conservation Advisory Network. DOS and EPA, with guidance from DOI, will launch a new interagency initiative, the Indigenous Peoples’ Conservation Advisory Network (IPCAN), to support and uplift the leadership of Indigenous peoples and their knowledge in conservation, restoration, and sustainable management efforts in terrestrial, coastal, and ocean ecosystems. IPCAN will be developed through robust consultation with global Indigenous stakeholders and will facilitate a global, Indigenous-led network supporting Indigenous peoples’ stewardship of lands and waters to address the climate and biodiversity crises.

Public-Private Partnership Initiatives

Establishment of an Office of Strategic Partnerships at Interior. DOI is establishing a new Office of Strategic Partnerships within Indian Affairs to build partnerships, leverage resources, and promote innovative solutions for Indian country. The new office will also work to bring awareness of the needs and unique status of Indian Tribes. With support from a partnership with Native Americans in Philanthropy, the office will work in close coordination with WHCNAA to serve Tribes and Tribal organizations to develop and build long-term sustainable public-private partnerships and further conservation, education, and economic development in Indian country.


Executive Order on Improving Public Safety and Criminal Justice for Native Americans and Addressing the Crisis of Missing or Murdered Indigenous People

By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, I hereby order as follows:

Section 1.  Policy.  The safety and well-being of all Native Americans is a top priority for my Administration.  My Administration will work hand in hand with Tribal Nations and Tribal partners to build safe and healthy Tribal communities and to support comprehensive law enforcement, prevention, intervention, and support services.

Generations of Native Americans have experienced violence or mourned a missing or murdered family member or loved one, and the lasting impacts of such tragedies are felt throughout the country.  Native Americans face unacceptably high levels of violence, and are victims of violent crime at a rate much higher than the national average. Native American women, in particular, are disproportionately the victims of sexual and gender-based violence, including intimate partner homicide.  Research shows that approximately half of Native American women have experienced sexual violence and that approximately half have experienced physical violence by an intimate  partner.  LGBTQ+ Native Americans and people who identify as “Two-Spirit” people within Tribal communities are also often the targets of violence.  And the vast majority of Native American survivors report being victimized by a non-Native American individual.

For far too long, justice has been elusive for many Native American victims, survivors, and families.  Criminal jurisdiction complexities and resource constraints have left many injustices unaddressed.  Some progress has been made, particularly on Tribal lands.  Given that approximately 70 percent of American Indian and Alaska Natives live in urban areas and part of this epidemic of violence is against Native American people in urban areas, we must continue that work on Tribal lands but also build on existing strategies to identify solutions directed toward the particular needs of urban Native Americans.

In 2020, bipartisan members of the 116th Congress took an important step forward through the passage of two pieces of legislation — Savanna’s Act and the Not Invisible Act of 2019 ‑- that include important provisions for improving law enforcement and justice protocols as well as improving access to data to address missing or murdered indigenous people.  My Administration is committed to fully implementing these laws and working with the Congress to fund these programs for Native Americans. Earlier this year, the Secretary of the Interior and the Attorney General announced a Joint Commission, established pursuant to the Not Invisible Act, that includes: representatives of Tribal, State, and local law enforcement; Tribal judges; Native American survivors of human trafficking; health care and mental health practitioners who have experience working with Native American survivors of human trafficking and sexual assault; Urban Indian Organizations focused on violence against women and children; and family members of missing or murdered indigenous people. The Commission will work to address the persistent violence endured by Native American families and communities across the country.  In addition, the Department of the Interior has established a special unit to focus resources on active and unsolved missing persons cases.

But more work is needed to address the crisis of ongoing violence against Native Americans — and of missing or murdered indigenous people.  Previous executive action has not achieved changes sufficient to reverse the epidemic of missing or murdered indigenous people and violence against Native Americans.  The Federal Government must prioritize addressing this issue and its underlying causes, commit the resources needed to tackle the high rates of violent crime that Native Americans experience over the long term, coordinate and provide resources to collect and analyze data, and work closely with Tribal leaders and community members, Urban Indian Organizations, and other interested parties to support prevention and intervention efforts that will make a meaningful and lasting difference on the ground.

It is the policy of my Administration to work directly with Tribal Nations to strengthen public safety and criminal justice in Indian Country and beyond, to reduce violence against Native American people, and to ensure swift and effective Federal action that responds to the problem of missing or murdered indigenous people.  My Administration understands that Native American people, particularly the survivors of violence, know best what their communities need to make them safer.  Consistent engagement, commitment, and collaboration will drive long-term improvement to public safety for all Native Americans.

Sec. 2.  Coordination of a Federal Law Enforcement Strategy to Prevent and Respond to Violence Against Native Americans.  The Attorney General, working with the Secretary of the Interior and the heads of other executive departments and agencies (agencies) as appropriate, shall assess and build on existing efforts to develop a coordinated and comprehensive Federal law enforcement strategy to prevent and respond to violence against Native Americans, including to address missing or murdered indigenous people where the Federal Government has jurisdiction.  The strategy shall set out a plan to address unsolved cases involving Native Americans; provide for coordination among the Department of Justice, the Department of the Interior, and the Department of Homeland Security in their efforts to end human trafficking; seek to strengthen and expand Native American participation in the Amber Alert in Indian Country initiative; and build on and enhance national training programs for Federal agents and prosecutors, including those related to trauma-informed and victim-centered interview and investigation techniques. The strategy shall also include protocols for effective, consistent, and culturally and linguistically appropriate communication with families of victims and their advocates, including through the creation of a designated position within the Department of Justice assigned the function of serving as the outreach services liaison for criminal cases where the Federal Government has jurisdiction.  The Attorney General and the Secretary of the Interior shall report to the President within 240 days of the date of this order describing the strategy developed and identifying additional resources or other support necessary to implement that strategy.

Sec. 3.  Supporting Tribal and Other Non-Federal Law Enforcement Efforts to Prevent and Respond to Violence Against Native Americans.
(a)  The Attorney General and the Secretary of the Interior, working with the heads of other agencies as appropriate, shall develop guidance, identify leading practices, and provide training and technical assistance, consistent with applicable law and available appropriations, to:

(i)    assist Tribal governments in implementing special domestic violence criminal jurisdiction pursuant to the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013, enabling them to prosecute certain non-Indian defendants for domestic violence and dating violence offenses in Indian Country, and also assist Tribes in implementing any relevant Tribal provisions in subsequent Violence Against Women Act reauthorization legislation;
(ii)   assist Tribal governments within Oklahoma, consistent with the United States Supreme Court’s decision in McGirt v. Oklahoma, 140 S. Ct. 2452 (2020), to build capacity to handle cases within their criminal jurisdiction, including the capacity to provide victim services;
(iii)  promote coordination of Federal, State, local, and Tribal law enforcement, including, as appropriate, through the development and support of Tribal Community Response Plans;
(iv)   continue to assist Tribal law enforcement and judicial personnel with training, as described in 25 U.S.C. 2451, on the investigation and prosecution of offenses related to illegal narcotics and on alcohol and substance abuse prevention and treatment; and
(v)    assist Tribal, State, and local law enforcement entities’ ability to apply linguistically appropriate, trauma-informed, and victim-centered practices when working with victims of crime, and to develop prevention strategies and recognize the indicators of human trafficking affecting Native Americans.

(b)  The Attorney General and the Secretary of the Interior shall continue to assess their respective grantmaking operations to evaluate whether any changes, consistent with applicable law, are warranted to make that grantmaking more equitable for Tribal applicants seeking support for law enforcement purposes and for the provision of services to victims and survivors.

Sec. 4.  Improving Data Collection, Analysis, and Information Sharing.

(a)  The Attorney General, in coordination with the Secretary of the Interior and the Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS), as appropriate, shall sustain efforts to improve data collection and information-sharing practices, conduct outreach and training, and promote accurate and timely access to information services regarding crimes or threats against Native Americans, including in urban areas, such as through the National Crime Information Center, the Next Generation Identification system, and the National Violent Death Reporting System, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law.

(b) The Attorney General shall take steps, consistent with applicable law, to expand the number of Tribes participating in the Tribal Access Program for National Crime Information, which provides Tribes access to national crime information systems for federally authorized purposes.

(c) The Attorney General, in coordination with the Secretary of the Interior and the Secretary of HHS, shall develop a strategy for ongoing analysis of data collected on violent crime and missing persons involving Native Americans, including in urban Indian communities, to better understand the extent and causes of this crisis.  Within 240 days of the date of this order, the Attorney General, the Secretary of the Interior, and the Secretary of HHS shall report jointly to the President on the strategy they have developed to conduct and coordinate that analysis and shall identify additional resources or other support necessary to implement that strategy.

(d) The Attorney General shall assess the current use of DNA testing and DNA database services to identify missing or murdered indigenous people and any responsible parties, including the unidentified human remains, missing persons, and relatives of missing persons indices of the Combined DNA Index System and the National Missing and Unidentified Persons System.  Within 240 days of the date of this order, the Attorney General shall report the outcome of this assessment to the President, along with recommendations to improve the use and accessibility of DNA database services.

(e) The Secretary of HHS shall evaluate the adequacy of research and data collection efforts at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Institutes of Health in accurately measuring the prevalence and effects of violence against Native Americans, especially those living in urban areas, and report to the President within 180 days of the date of this order on those findings and any planned changes to improve those research and data collection efforts.

Sec. 5.  Strengthening Prevention, Early Intervention, and Victim and Survivor Services.

(a)  The Secretary of HHS, in consultation with the Secretary of the Interior and Tribal Nations and after conferring with other agencies, researchers, and community-based organizations supporting indigenous wellbeing, including Urban Indian Organizations, as appropriate, shall develop a comprehensive plan to support prevention efforts that reduce risk factors for victimization of Native Americans and increase protective factors, including by enhancing the delivery of services for Native American victims and survivors, as well as their families and advocates.  The comprehensive plan shall, to the extent possible, build on the existing evidence base.  The plan shall include strategies for improving mental and behavioral health; providing substance abuse services; providing family support, including high-quality early childhood programs for victims and survivors with young children; and preventing elder abuse, gender-based violence, and human trafficking.  In addition, the plan shall also include community-based strategies that improve community cohesion and cultural connectivity and preservation, educational programs to increase empowerment and self-advocacy, and strategies to encourage culturally and linguistically appropriate, trauma-informed, and victim-centered service delivery to Native Americans, including for survivors of gender-based violence.  The Secretary of HHS shall report to the President within 240 days of the date of this order describing the plan and actions taken and identifying any additional resources or other support needed.

(b)  The Secretary of HHS and the Secretary of the Interior shall review procedures within their respective departments for reporting child abuse and neglect, including barriers to reporting, and shall take appropriate action to make reporting of child abuse and neglect by the Indian Health Service easier and more streamlined.  In addition, the Secretaries shall assess and identify ways to expand Native American access to child advocacy center services such as pediatric medical forensic examination services, mental health care providers with advanced training in child trauma, and culturally and linguistically appropriate activities and services geared toward pediatric patients.  The Secretaries shall report to the President within 180 days of the date of this order describing actions taken, findings from the assessment, and planned actions to expand access, and identifying any additional resources or other support needed.

(c)  The Secretary of the Interior, consulting with the Attorney General and the Secretary of HHS, as appropriate, shall evaluate the effectiveness of existing technical assistance and judicial support services for Tribes to provide community-based conflict resolution, as well as culturally and linguistically appropriate, trauma-informed, and victim-centered strategies, including traditional healing services and healing courts, and shall identify and make improvements as needed.  The Secretary of the Interior shall report to the President within 180 days of the date of this order describing the evaluation findings and the improvements implemented.

Sec. 6.  Consultation and Engagement.  In accordance with the Presidential Memorandum of January 26, 2021 (Tribal Consultation and Strengthening Nation-to-Nation Relationships), the Departments of Justice, the Interior, HHS, Energy, and Homeland Security shall conduct timely consultations with Tribal Nations and shall engage Native American communities to obtain their comments and recommendations regarding implementing sections 2 through 5 of this order.  Tribal consultation and engagement shall continue as the strategies required by this order are implemented.

Sec. 7.  Definitions.  For the purposes of this order

(a) “Tribal Nation” means an American Indian or Alaska Native tribe, band, nation, pueblo, village, or community that the Secretary of the Interior acknowledges as a federally recognized tribe pursuant to the Federally Recognized Indian Tribe List Act of 1994, 25 U.S.C. 5130, 5131.
(b) “Native American” and “Native” mean members of one or more Tribal Nations.
(c) “Urban Indian Organization” means a nonprofit corporate body situated in an urban center, governed by an urban Indian controlled board of directors, and providing for the maximum participation of all interested Indian groups and individuals, which body is capable of legally cooperating with other public and private entities, pursuant to 25 U.S.C. 1603(29).

Sec. 8.  General Provisions.
(a)  Nothing in this order shall be construed to impair or otherwise affect:
(i)   the authority granted by law to an executive department or agency, or the head thereof; or
(ii)  the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals.
(b)  This order shall be implemented consistent with applicable law and subject to the availability of appropriations.
(c)  This order is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person.

Ho-Chunk Nation Department of Health Achieves Public Health Accreditation


Contact: Jessica Dean at and Janee Andrews at

Ho-Chunk Nation Department of

Health Achieves Public Health Accreditation

WASHINGTON, DC – October 11, 2022 – The National Indian Health Board (NIHB) celebrates the recent recognition of the Ho-Chunk Nation and its achievement as a nationally-accredited public health department. Administered by the Public Health Accreditation Board (PHAB), accreditation outlines national standards for comprehensive public health operations and capacity across 32 standards and 12 domains through a systematic and peer-review process. The achievement of public health accreditation is one method to strengthen Tribal public health infrastructure and capacity. Ho-Chunk Nation Department of Health is the sixth Tribe to have achieved this designation.

The Ho-Chunk Nation is a former recipient of NIHB’s Tribal Accreditation Support Initiative (ASI) (now known as the “Strong Systems, Stronger Communities” program), which supports Tribes interested in systems improvement and pursuing public health accreditation. NIHB has supported over 20 Tribes since 2014 in systematic efforts to improve their public health systems. Ho-Chunk Nation was an early recipient of the Tribal ASI grant and began its partnership with NIHB in 2016. Since starting its accreditation journey, Ho-Chunk Nation has not only improved its public health services but also shared lessons-learned with other NIHB grantees and Tribal partners. This included presenting on Tribal Accreditation Learning Community webinars and mentoring Tribes that were newer to public health accreditation during NIHB mentoring site visits.

“Accreditation is a formal recognition of a health department that serves their people effectively and meets the highest standard in public health services. Ho-Chunk Nation’s achievement recognizes their Tribal Nation as a leader in public health during a time in which public health is so vital to our future,” shared Stacy A. Bohlen, CEO of NIHB.

Public Health Director Kandyce Dunlap shared a quote from Pam Thunder, Registered Sanitarian and Environmental Program Manager, about the Tribe’s journey.

“The Ho-Chunk Nation Department of Health is excited to announce that we received public health accreditation from the Public Health Accreditation Board (PHAB). This accreditation has helped our health department set a foundation to improve our existing programming, meaningfully engage our community, incorporate discussions with leadership, and improve transparency with key stakeholders. This has also helped us to develop formal processes and partnerships that will positively impact our community members to achieve “building a strong mind, body, and spirit together. Waza higiwire (we care).”

The next Strong Systems, Stronger Communities funding opportunity will be released in early fall 2022. For more information about this program, contact Jessica Dean at

National Indian Health Board Funding Opportunity Request for Applications (RFA)

With funds from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the National Indian Health Board (NIHB) is offering a funding opportunity to federally recognized Tribes, Tribal schools, Area Indian Health Boards, and Tribal Epidemiology Centers seeking resources to provide a safe environment for students to attend in-person classes during the 2022-2023 school year. This funding is intended to fulfill the immediate to help students and staff protect themselves while attending in-person school.


To be considered eligible for this funding opportunity, applicants must be an official Tribal entity defined as a federally recognized Tribal government, Tribal organization, or inter-Tribal consortium defined in the Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act as amended.

This includes:

  • Federally recognized Tribes
  • Tribally owned and operated schools
  • Area Indian Health Boards (AIHBs)
  • Tribal Epidemiology Centers (TECs)


Awards will be for up to 40 Tribes and Tribal organizations between $5,000- $15,000.


Funds can be used for costs associated with reducing the spread of COVID-19 in Tribal schools and may be used to develop and implement endemic plans to help ensure students remain safe during in-person classes.

Examples include (but are not limited to):

  • Purchasing N-95 masks and other supplies to prevent and mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in Tribal schools
  • Purchasing supplies for a vaccination event
  • Purchasing and installing computer software for the school clinic to record vaccination (e.g., to serve as a data sharing)
  • Turning rooms within facilities into isolation rooms
  • Marketing and education material for COVID-19 prevention, vaccination, and booster promotion in Tribal Schools and communities

NIHB will also provide the awardees Act of Love kits, which contain a beautifully designed mask that can be placed over an N-95 mask, hand sanitizer, anti-bacterial wipes, postcards, and stickers.



Completed applications are due to NIHB via email by 11:59 PM ET on Wednesday, October 5, 2022.

Using Federal Funds for Cell Phones and Personal Protective Equipment

On Friday, Children’s Bureau Associate Commissioner Jerry Milner sent a letter to child welfare leaders addressing the availability of federal funding and other resources to assist with the purchase of cell phones and plans to facilitate and maintain contact and the purchase of personal protective equipment (PPE) as an allowable cost.

The letter focuses on the Title IV-B and Title IV-E programs, specifically including the Chafee program under Title IV-E that supports services to youth aging out of foster care. Several hundred tribes operate the Title IV-B programs, both subpart 1 and 2, and over a 100 tribes operate the Title IV-E program either through a direct plan with the federal government or through an agreement with a state.

It states, “The purchase and operation of cell phones for children and youth in foster care, their parents, or foster parents is an allowable cost under Title IV-B and/or the John H. Chafee Foster Care Program for Successful Transition to Adulthood (Chafee) as long as the costs are necessary to fulfill one or more program purposes in §422 (relating to the state plan for child welfare services under Title IV-B, subpart 1), §432 (relating to the state plan for child welfare service under title IV-B, subpart 2) and/or §477 (relating to Chafee program purposes) of the Act.”

“The purchase of a cell phone for a parent or foster parent can meet a Title IV-B program purpose if it is determined that it will facilitate needed communications for case management purposes between such an individual and the agency caseworker, or allow a parent to participate in a remotely-located court hearing or visitation with the child. Additionally, the recently enacted Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (Public Law (P.L.) 116-136) authorized additional funding under Title IV-B, subpart 1 ‘to prevent, prepare for, and respond to coronavirus, domestically or internationally’” where agencies meet specific conditions to claim Federal financial participation for these costs.

The letter also describes circumstances under which the purchase of PPE “used by child welfare caseworkers to minimize exposure to COVID-19 is an allowable case management administrative cost under Title IV-E of the Act (45 CFR §1356.60(c)(2))” and “an allowable expenditure of Title IV-B funds for program purposes such as caseworker visits (§422(b)(17) of the Act and for states, §424(f) of the Act) by both state and Tribal Title IV-B agencies.” Conditions under which the purchase of PPE may be allowable for providers such as foster parents, kinship providers, and staff of child care institutions are also described.

Please review the entirety of the guidance provided here: Children’s Bureau Guidance for Cell Phones and Personal Protective Equipment

For additional Children’s Bureau resources and guidance, please see: Children’s Bureau COVID-19 Resources

FEMA Advisory: Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic Whole-of-America Response

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic Whole-of-America Response

In support of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic response, FEMA provides the following:  FEMA Project Airbridge video Advisory; Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Preservation Best Practices Advisory and Fact Sheet, and a Resource Requests from the International Reagent Resource (IRR) Advisory and Fact Sheet.

FEMA Project Airbridge
To efficiently maintain the country’s existing medical supply chain infrastructure, FEMA augments the existing supply chain through a variety of strategies, to include FEMA Project Airbridge.

FEMA created Project Airbridge to reduce the amount of time it takes for U.S. medical supply distributors to get commercially sourced and procured Personal Protective Equipment and other critical supplies into the country for their respective customers. FEMA is doing this by covering the cost to fly supplies into the U.S. from overseas factories, cutting the amount of time it takes to ship supplies from weeks to days.

FEMA provides distributors with up-to-date information on the locations across the country hardest hit by COVID-19 or in most need of resources now and in the future. As part of the current agreement with distributors, 50 percent of the supplies on each plane are directed by the distributors to customers within hotspot areas with the most critical needs for those supplies. The HHS and FEMA determine hotspot areas based on CDC data.

A brief video on Project Airbridge is available on FEMA Website<> and on all FEMA social media accounts.

Project Airbridge Advisory: Attachment [1]

Personal Protective Equipment Preservation Best Practices
This Personal Protective Equipment Preservation Best Practices Fact Sheet (attached) summarizes best practices for national implementation to sustain personal protective equipment (PPE) while ensuring the protection of workers during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic response.

The objective of the COVID-19 National Strategy for Addressing PPE Shortage is to ensure protection against COVID-19 for healthcare workers, first responders, and patients by implementing three pillars of practice: reduce, reuse, and repurpose. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic response and associated PPE shortages, implementation of contingency and crisis capacity plans may be necessary to ensure continued availability of protective gear.

This fact sheet amplifies the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) strategies on conventional, contingency and crisis capacity strategies for optimizing PPE. All U.S. healthcare facilities should begin using PPE contingency strategies now and may need to consider crisis capacity strategies if experiencing PPE shortages.

Preserving Personal Protective Equipment Best Practices Advisory: Attachment [2]
Preserving Personal Protective Equipment Best Practices Fact Sheet: Attachment [3]

Resource Requests from the International Reagent Resource
The International Reagent Resource (IRR), established by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), acquires, authenticates, and produces reagents that scientists need to carry out basic research and develop improved diagnostic tests, vaccines, and detection methods.

The (IRR) Fact Sheet (attached) outlines a simplified process for states and territories to make resource requests from the IRR. Consolidating testing supplies under the IRR alleviates burden on public health labs, which increases efficiency and reduces need to work with separate, individual suppliers for swabs, reagents, and other diagnostic testing supplies.

International Reagent Resource Advisory: Attachment [4]
International Reagent Resource Fact Sheet: Attachment [5]

Treasury Launches Web Portal and Begins Disbursement of CARES Act Funding to State, Local, and Tribal Governments

Through the Coronavirus Relief Fund, the CARES Act provides for payments to State, Local, and Tribal governments navigating the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak.

The CARES Act established the $150 billion Coronavirus Relief Fund.

Treasury will make payments from the Fund to States and eligible units of local government; the District of Columbia and U.S. Territories (the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the United States Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands); and Tribal governments (collectively “governments”).

The CARES Act requires that the payments from the Coronavirus Relief Fund only be used to cover expenses that—

(1) are necessary expenditures incurred due to the public health emergency with respect to the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID–19);

(2) were not accounted for in the budget most recently approved as of March 27, 2020 (the date of enactment of the CARES Act) for the State or government; and

(3) were incurred during the period that begins on March 1, 2020, and ends on December 30, 2020.

Additional information on eligible uses of Fund disbursements by governments will be posted as it becomes available.

Amounts paid to States, the District of Columbia, U.S. Territories, and eligible units of local government are based on population as provided in the CARES Act.  The CARES Act directs Treasury to use U.S. Census Bureau data for the most recent year for which data is available.  The amount of payments made to each State will be reduced by the aggregate amount of payments that will be disbursed to eligible local governments within such State that have provided the required certifications to Treasury.  Additional information on these points can be accessed below.

A unit of local government eligible for receipt of direct payment includes a county, municipality, town, township, village, parish, borough, or other unit of general government below the State level with a population that exceeds 500,000.  Eligible local governments must submit the certification required by the CARES Act to Treasury by the deadline set forth below in order to receive payment.

Payments to Tribal Governments are to be determined by the Secretary of the Treasury in consultation with the Secretary of the Interior and Indian Tribes.  Although that consultation has not yet concluded, certain data is requested of Tribal governments at this time to assist in this determination.  Additional information on payments to Tribal governments will be posted as it becomes available.

Governments eligible for payments must provide payment information and required supporting documentation through the electronic form accessible below.  To ensure payments are made within the 30 day period specified by the CARES Act, governments must submit completed payment materials not later than 11:59 p.m. EDT on April 17, 2020.  Eligible local and Tribal governments that do not provide required information—and in the case of a local government, the required certification—by 11:59 p.m. EDT on April 17, 2020, may not receive any payment from the Fund.

Please Note: the online application form is compatible with the following Web browsers: Internet Explorer 10+, Chrome 80.0+,Safari 13.1+. Firefox 74.0+.

Construction Management students build cover for NAAC sweat lodge

MSU BILLINGS NEWS—The Native American Achievement Center (NAAC) at Montana State University Billings is home to the first and only on-campus sweat lodge in the state of Montana. This January, the NAAC partnered with Facilities Services and the City College Construction program for the completion of a wooden cover for the sweat lodge, preventing damage and protecting it from Montana’s weather.

With winter weather upon us, time was limited to construct a substantial snow cover on-site at the NAAC. Facilities Services Director Chris Eagan, alongside Construction Management Instructor David Nedrow and his students were up to the challenge, managing to plan, design, gain approvals, order materials, and build the structure in under a month. After completing the necessary prep work in the shop, the group was able to move on-site and complete the structure in two working days.

This is the second collaboration between Facilities Services and the Construction Program at City College. This November, students helped to complete a storage shed at the Chancellor’s residence in a mere eight days.

Projects like these are influential to student success in the Construction Management program. The project “provides the students real opportunities to receive training and gain experience in a number of hands-on skills, many of which are impossible in our shop setting,” says Nedrow. Students in the program have been able to gain hands-on experience working for real clients, participating in activities such as excavation, concrete work, building layout, and carpentry, which would otherwise be unavailable.

“The best advantage of these projects, however, is our ability to involve the students in the site assessment, budgeting and estimating, planning, material ordering and handling, and other tasks,” shares Nedrow. Students are able to hone their communication skills involved in project management, even if just on a small scale. They are exposed to a number of challenges that real contractors face, coming up with effective ways to overcome them.

“The variety and uniqueness provide the teaching moments we need,” says Nedrow. “We’ve enjoyed the projects so far and look forward to more to come.”

Students in the program are currently working on the partial interior renovation of a 40-year-old rental home located on Rimrock. This project will serve as yet another real-life learning experience for students.

“I believe projects like these and the real world experiences they provide will help our current students learn valuable skills and build marketable resumes,” said Nedrow, “while also providing the exposure our program needs to attract the next class.”

Funds for the sweat lodge were raised by the NAAC and MSU Billings Foundation.

Contact: City College Construction Management Program Instructor David Nedrow, 247-3053,<>; Facilities Services Director Christopher Eagan, 406-657-2197,<>.