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16th National Indian Nations Conference: Justice for Victims of Crime

Wednesday, December 5, 2018 to Friday, December 7, 2018

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The Office for Victims of Crime (OVC), Office of Justice Programs, within the U.S. Department of Justice is pleased to announce the 16th National Indian Nations Conference: Justice for Victims of Crime. The Conference will be held Wednesday, December 5, 2018 through Friday, December 7, 2018, on the reservation of the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians, California, with the theme, "Braiding Strength, Hope, and Healing for the Path Forward." This year's conference is once again coordinated by the Tribal Law and Policy Institute under a grant from OVC. 

Please note that the 16th National Indian Nations Conference has now been formally approved by the U.S. Department of Justice.

The purpose of the 16th National Indian Nations Conference—the largest U.S. Department of Justice sponsored Indian Nations conference, is to bring together Native American victims, victim advocates, tribal leaders, victim service providers, community volunteers, prosecutors, judicial and law enforcement personnel, family violence and sexual assault specialists, medical providers, social services and mental health personnel, probation/corrections, criminal justice and juvenile justice personnel, as well as federal and state agency representatives to share their knowledge, experiences and ideas for developing programs that serve the unique needs of crime victims in Indian Country. 

This year's conference goals are:

  • Honoring & Listening to Victim/Survivor Voices: Creating victim-centered/sensitive responses; being inclusive of victim/survivors particularly those from un‐served or underserved populations, including LGBTQ victims, disabled victims and youth victims; and promoting peer to peer learning opportunities.
  • Promoting Safety, Justice and Healing: Justice for victims/justice for all; understanding jurisdictional issues; exercising tribal sovereignty to promote safety & justice; highlighting the resiliency of spirituality & healing in tribal communities.
  • Honoring the Wisdom of the Past: Understanding historical trauma; enlisting tribal elders as keepers of our tribal histories; and embracing traditional teachings.
  • Promoting Traditional Values: Promoting traditional values and incorporating traditional skills in crime victim services; upholding wellness, mentally, physically, spiritually and emotionally; and framing victim services around tribal traditions.
  • Ensuring Safety, Justice & Healing for Seven Generations of Children: Addressing child sexual abuse & education on developing programs for victims; emphasis on victims within the juvenile justice system; support for keeping youth within the community.
  • Working in Harmony: Building partnerships with federal and state agencies; supporting partnerships between tribes, education on the importance of networking and working together in collaboration to strengthen services; supporting multi-disciplinary teams; and networking with Native men to address domestic violence & sexual assault.
  • Supporting and Educating Tribal Leaders: Educating and supporting efforts of tribal leaders to achieve accountability and responsibility to victims of crime.
  • Sustaining our Legacy: Developing skills and incorporating cultural approaches to enhance sustainability and measurability; increasing the accuracy of victimization research; and developing capacity within victim services.
  • Healing the Healers: Ensuring safety and support for service providers.