AVCP organized a strategic planning session with the State of Alaska Department of Public Safety, the Alaska State Troopers, and all VPSO grantee organizations. This state grant program allows for the operation of VPSO programs within eight tribal consortiums, one tribe, and one borough in rural Alaska.
At the time of this event, the State of Alaska VPSO Program was housed within the State of Alaska Department of Public Safety and under the administration of the Division of Alaska State Troopers (the VPSO Program has since transitioned out of the Division of Alaska State Troopers and is now directly under the State of Alaska Public Safety Commissioner.
AVCP staff conducted site visits of 46 (of 48) communities in our region. Findings confirmed that the state of our communities’ public safety buildings vary significantly. The assessment identifies the top three to five critically necessary repairs to each public safety building. (It is by no means an exhaustive list.) Eight communities did not have a public safety facility of any kind.
Theme: Addressing Barriers and Identifying Solutions in the Y-K Delta
This gathering provided a forum for tribal leaders and public safety providers at the local, municipal, state, and federal levels, to guide our work in identifying and addressing public safety issues for the well-being of our communities.
The AVCP Public Safety Task Force is an interdepartmental group of AVCP staff, brought together to assess all aspects of public safety in the Y-K Delta and to develop recommendations for a public safety service delivery model that fits our region.
43 AVCP member tribes submitted Tribal Law and Order Act (TLOA) requests to the Department of Justice requesting the United States to assume federal criminal jurisdiction over Indian country in the AVCP Region.
US Attorney General Barr met with AVCP’s Public Safety Taskforce in Bethel, Alaska, before traveling to Napaskiak, Alaska, where the Napaskiak Traditional Council presented him with a Resolution to Request for a Declaration of Emergency. During his visit to Bethel, AVCP’s Public Safety Taskforce presented the AVCP Tribal Safety and Wellness Proposal: Phase One to both Attorney General Barr and Senator Murkowski.
This listening session in Bethel, Alaska, offered an opportunity for tribal representative to provide testimony about the state of public safety in their communities. This session was lead by Tara Sweeney, Assistant Secretary, DOI Office of Indian Affairs; Kate MacGregor, Deputy Chief of Staff, U.S. DOI; Jennifer Lichter, Deputy Director, Domestic Policy Council; as well as representatives from the offices of: Justice Services, US DOI; Alaska Region, BIA; Native American Affairs, US DHHS; Attorney General, US DOJ; Domestic Policy Council; Intergovernmental Affairs; Senator Murkowski; and Senator Sullivan.
Common themes in testimony included:
This commission was established under Executive Order No. 13896 signed by President Trump. AVCP provided a presentation to the Working Group on Rural and Tribal Law Enforcement May 4th and provided testimony to the full Commission on May 27th. View our testimony here and our report here.