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Tribal Strategies Against Violence: Fort Peck Assiniboine and Sioux Tribes Case Study

NCJ Number
Date Published
January 2002
51 pages
This report documents the activities implemented by the Fort Peck Assiniboine and Sioux Tribes, along with their impact, under three grant awards of the U.S. Justice Department's initiative of Tribal Strategies Against Violence (TSAV), which is a Federal-tribal partnership intended to reduce crime, violence, and drug demand in seven selected American Indian Tribes.
The Fort Peck Assiniboine and Sioux Tribes are a federally recognized American Indian Tribe located in northeastern Montana. The initial TSAV grant was awarded October 1, 1995, to make the Fort Peck Tribes the only pilot site among the four TSAV sites included in the formal Federal evaluation. The evaluation focused on the extent to which the TSAV goals were achieved. The goals were as follows: Establish and/or enhance a diverse planning team and build partnerships; develop and implement cost-effective crime and violence reduction strategies; provide youth with alternatives to substance abuse and gang involvement; and enhance local capability to identify public and private resources. The evaluation involved two site visits, the first in March 1998 and the second in October 1999. Evaluation activities included on-site interviews with affiliated program staff of the Fort Peck Tribes, key TSAV core team members, key tribal court personnel, key tribal law enforcement personnel, TSAV program partners, the Tribal Chairman and tribal council members, and other community service providers that participated in the local TSAV initiative's planning and implementation. The evaluation also reviewed program documents in U.S. Justice Department files as well as tribal and project documents maintained on-site. A survey of local TSAV stakeholders was conducted; and statistical data were analyzed from the Fort Peck Tribes' Department of Law and Justice, the Fort Peck Tribal Court, and the Wolf Point Police Department. The assessment of program structure and chronology focused on program organization and structure; the planning process; goals and strategies; budget; and site monitoring, reporting, and local evaluation. The assessment of the implementation of local TSAV strategies addressed approaches to implementing community policing and enhancing prosecution; reducing incidents of juvenile violence, gang activity, and substance abuse; and the development and enhancement of community partnerships. The evaluation also examined the extent to which TSAV objectives were achieved. The evaluation found that significant progress was made in collaborating with nontribal entities, notably in interaction with several public schools and the police departments. Strategies undertaken to reduce crime and violence were both short-term and long-term, and a variety of activities were provided for youth as alternatives to using substances and becoming involved in gangs. By the fiscal year ending September 30, 1999, the Fort Peck Tribes had obtained funding for several new programs, including Boys and Girls Club funding, drug court funding, and STOP grant funds. There was little or no statistical evidence to document TSAV's impact on crime or violence; however, there was evidence that the project was effective in building community awareness about violence, fostering cooperation among the TSAV partners, identifying additional funding to apply to targeted problems, improving services of TSAV partner agencies, and enhancing the system for dealing with domestic violence. The project was least effective in preventing substance abuse, reducing drug use, reducing drunk driving, and reducing family violence. Overall, as a comprehensive problem solving process for addressing crime, violence, and substance abuse, the Fort Peck Assiniboine and Sioux Tribes' TSAV initiative has apparently met grant expectations. 6 tables and 4 charts

Date Published: January 1, 2002