Muscogee (Creek) Nation Receives Grant to Support Tribal Courts

Sep 18, 2020

The Bureau of Indian Affairs Office of Tribal Justice Support awarded the Muscogee (Creek) Nation $547,980 in grant money to provide more staff and services for its tribal court system.

The money will be used to hire four additional prosecutors to handle cases involving domestic violence, protective orders and other cases that relate to the Violence Against Women Act. 

The grant will also be used to update tribal criminal codes and buy more equipment. Tribal codes needing an update include traffic, youthful offenders, criminal offenses and criminal procedures.

MCN's Attorney General Roger Wiley said the Nation will seek additional funding.

"The Nation is in need of sufficient funding to support the entire criminal justice system," Wiley said. "The juvenile justice system will require funding to establish a basic framework of services such as: prevention / early intervention, diversion, intake, detention, probation and placement. We will seek out all sources of tribal and federal funding to address the Nation's needs."

Muscogee Creek Nation's Family Violence Prevention Program said they've seen an increase in the number of calls from people seeking assistance since the McGirt v. Oklahoma ruling.

Last month, the Justice Department's Office on Violence Against Women announced that it was dedicating more than $2 million dollars to combat domestic violence in Indian Country.

That money will support Tribal Special Assistant United States Attorney (Tribal SAUSA) Inititative. These are cross-deputized tribal prosecutors that handle cases involving sexual assault in tribal and federal court. Chickasaw Nation in the Western District of Oklahoma will be one of five tribal SAUSA's.

Native women experience some of the highest rates of violence in the country.