Native American Resources

Clicking on any the following links will exit you from the Ombudsman site. While we are not responsible for the content of these sites, we have found the information contained in them to be very helpful. Good luck in your search and please visit us again soon!

State Resources

Pine Tree Legal Assistance (PTLA)
Native American Legal Resources

PTLA provides legal services to members of the Micmac, Maliseet, Penobscot and Passamaquoddy Tribes and to other Indians residing in Maine. PTLA publishes the Wabanaki Legal News and the Quinnehtukqut Legal News (for tribes in Connecticut) two times per year.

PTLA staff travel to Indian Island, Indian Township, Pleasant Point, Houlton and Presque Isle at least once a month. Check our travel schedule here. Call 1-877-213-5630 to check on any last-minute scheduling changes.


National Resources

National Indian Child Welfare Association (NICWA)

The National Indian Child Welfare Association is a national voice for American Indian children and families. NICWA is the most comprehensive source of information on American Indian child welfare and the only national American Indian organization focused specifically on the tribal capacity to prevent child abuse and neglect.

NICWA is a private, non-profit, membership organization based in Portland, Oregon. Members include tribes, individuals—both Indian and non-Indian—and private organizations from around the United States concerned with American Indian child and family issues. Their board of directors is made up of nineteen (19) American Indians, and a staff of nineteen (19), most of whom are American Indians. Together, our partners, board, and staff work to protect the most vital resource of American Indian people—our children.

The National Indian Child Welfare Association works to address the issues of child abuse and neglect through training, research, public policy, and grassroots community development. NICWA also works to support compliance with the Indian Child Welfare Act of 1978 (ICWA), which seeks to keep American Indian children with American Indian families.

NICWA improves the lives of American Indian children and families by helping tribes and other service providers implement services that are culturally competent, community-based, and focused on the strengths and assets of families. This work includes collaborating with tribal and urban Indian child welfare programs to increase their service capacity, enhancing tribal-state relationships, and providing training, technical assistance, information services and alliance building.


U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs (OJP)
Office of Tribal Justice

The Office of Tribal Justice is the primary point of contact for the Department of Justice with federally recognized Native American tribes, and advises the Department on legal and policy matters pertaining to Native Americans:

  • Provide a single point of contact within the Department for meeting the broad and complex federal responsibilities owed to federally recognized Indian tribes.
  • Promote internal uniformity of Department policies and litigating positions relating to Indian country.
  • Advise Department components litigating, protecting or otherwise addressing Native American rights and/or related issues.
  • Ensure that the Department clearly communicates policies and positions to tribal leaders.
  • Maintain liaison with federally recognized tribes, and work with the appropriate federal, state, and local officials, professional associations, and public interest groups.
  • Coordinate, together with the Office of Legislative Affairs, the Department’s legislative efforts relating to Indian country.


U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs (OJP)
Tribal Justice and Safety

In June 2009, the Justice Department announced the launch of a major new initiative to increase engagement, coordination and action on public safety in tribal communities. The effort was launched with a series of regional summits to seek input from tribal representatives. Planning sessions included department component leaders, tribal leaders and experts in relevant areas to begin talks on a range of important issues including:

  • law enforcement policy and personnel;
  • communications and consultation;
  • grants and technical assistance;
  • detention facilities;
  • federal prosecution in Indian country;
  • tribal court development;
  • domestic violence;
  • drug courts and substance abuse;
  • federal litigation involving tribes; and
  • civil rights.