The Alaska Native Women’s Resource Center Celebrates the Release of Its New Resource Book Alaska Native Women: Ending the Violence, Reclaiming a Sacred Status

By the Alaska Native Women’s Resource Center (AKNWRC)
AKNWRC’s official book reception took place at the 2023 Women Are Sacred Conference in Albuquerque, NM. / Photo courtesy of Kelsey Foote.

Surrounded by friends, family, and strong-hearted advocates from all across Indian Country, the Alaska Native Women’s Resource Center (AKNWRC), its Board of Directors, Staff, and Organizational Partners celebrated the release of their new resource book Alaska Native Women: Ending the Violence, Reclaiming a Sacred Status at their book launch reception held during the 2023 Women Are Sacred Conference at the Isleta Resort and Casino in Albuquerque, NM.

In a heartfelt tribute to the late Shirley Moses, a pioneering figure of the AKNWRC, we unveiled a groundbreaking resource: A compelling book that offers a unique Indigenous perspective on the pervasive issue of violence against Alaska Native women. This literary milestone is dedicated to Shirley Moses' memory and marks the AKNWRC's unwavering commitment to addressing this critical issue from a culturally sensitive perspective.

The AKNWRC publication represents the first attempt to explain the complex problem of violence against Alaska Native women through the eyes of Alaska Natives. Beyond merely recounting individual acts of violence, this book delves deep into the socio-historical context, shedding light on the disturbingly disproportionate rates of violence endured by Alaska Native women across generations. In its pages, readers will find a path toward healing, understanding how this crisis of violence has evolved, driven by systemic barriers and the insufficient protection afforded to Native women.

Tami Truett Jerue and Christopher Foley share a smile while recognizing the Indian Law Resource Center’s invaluable contributions to the AKNWRC resource book. / Photo courtesy of Rick A. Garcia, AKNWRC.


The AKNWRC book release included selected readings from distinguished Alaska Native advocates and contributors. Photo courtesy of Rick A. Garcia, AKNWRC.

The book's unveiling was a momentous occasion, featuring moving selected readings by distinguished contributors, including Lynn Hootch, Director of the Yup'ik Women's Coalition; Martha Bravo, the daughter of the late Shirley Moses; Nettie Warbelow, Tribal Court Judge for the Native Village of Tetlin; and Tami Truett Jerue, Executive Director of AKNWRC. Additionally, the event served as a platform to acknowledge and honor the invaluable contributions of partner organizations, the National Indigenous Women’s Resource Center and the Indian Law Resource Center, who have been steadfast allies in advancing this vital work from its inception.

After decades of relentless advocacy for survivors, the AKNWRC's board and dedicated staff profoundly understand domestic violence and sexual assault and recognize the sacred status of Alaska Native women within Indigenous Nations. They trace the roots of the ongoing crisis of violence back to colonization that affected Alaska Natives. The book's title calls for necessary legal and policy reforms, encapsulating the vision of ending violence against Alaska Native Women, intricately entwined with the restoration of the sacred status of women within sovereign Indigenous nations.

This newly unveiled resource offers insight into the fundamental changes required to eradicate domestic violence and sexual violence, ultimately paving the way for a future where Alaska Native women are free from fear and violence.

“The changes to our lives as Native women by outsiders cannot be undone. What can be done is to recognize and support the authority of villages to utilize their power of government to protect their well-being. Understanding the past can help us to make the changes needed today to protect Native women.”
—Tami Truett Jerue, Executive Director, AKNWRC.