Family Violence

Family Violence

Resources relating to cases of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, trafficking, elder abuse, and stalking and Native American communities.

Featured Resources

A Journey to Healing: How One Tribe Incorporates a Traditional Approach to Address Domestic Violence
Listen · 37:10    

Before you listen: Please be aware that this episode includes first-person accounts of domestic violence. The people sharing them agreed to do so in hopes that others might benefit from what they’ve learned.

Native American women — and men — are more likely than white counterparts to experience intimate partner violence. That violence is often grounded in trauma that impacts whole communities. For indigenous people, it can be traced back to colonization as well as to racism and oppression that persists today. In this episode, you’ll hear members of California’s Yurok Tribe talk about the impact of domestic violence, and how the tribal court worked to put in place a culturally-relevant, and more effective, path to healing.

In this episode, you will hear from:

  • “Mark” and “Lydia” who share their personal experiences
  • The Honorable Abbi Abinanti, Elder and Chief Judge of the Yurok Tribe
  • Lori Nesbitt, Facilitator of the Yurok Batterers Intervention Program/Yurok Tribal Court Opioid Program Manager
  • Lee Romney, producer of this episode, as narrator

StrongHearts Native Helpline (1-844-7NATIVE), a national, confidential and safe helpline for Native Americans facing domestic violence and dating violence.

Information Bulletin on Enforcement of Tribal Court Protection Orders: This bulletin, issued by the California Office of the Attorney General, is the culmination of work on the part of the California Tribal Court-State Court Forum, in partnership with the California Department of Justice (DOJ), the California State Sheriffs’ Association, the U.S. Attorney General’s Office, and other justice partners.

Enforcement of Tribal Protection Orders in California Video

This video explains the obligations of law enforcement officers in California under both federal and state law to recognize and enforce tribal court domestic violence restraining orders. These orders do not need to be registered with the state court or locatable in law enforcement data bases. If the orders are valid on their face they must be enforced.

Native American Statistical Abstract: Violence and Victimization
This document provides statistics on violence and victimization in tribal communities.

Native American Community Justice Project
In 2008, a statewide needs assessment was conducted in urban and rural tribal communities throughout California that requested to participate in the project.  The NACJP began the dialogue between California’s tribal communities, Native American agencies, the California judicial branch and state agency partners on domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, and teen-dating violence.

Responses to Domestic Violence in Tribal Communities
The report details the results of a regional survey of Northern California tribal communities focused on domestic violence. Surveys and focus groups were conducted to assess the prevalence of domestic violence victimization, perpetration, and reporting to authorities; perceptions regarding community and justice system responses to these incidents; and future policy recommendations. Researchers found that more than one-third of adults reported previous domestic violence victimization, among other findings..

Statewide Directory of Native American Resources
The directory contains contact information on services to assist Indian children and families.

S.T.E.P.S. to Justice- Domestic Violence: State/Tribal Education, Partnerships, and Services—Information for Tribal Court and State Court Judges. The brochure describes local educational services and other technical assistance for tribal and state court judges.

Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training: Policing Indian Lands; Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault in Tribal Communities

California Attorney General Office of Native American Affairs

Violence Against Women Act (18 U.S.C. § 2265)

California's Uniform Interstate Enforcement of Domestic Violence Protection Orders Act (Family Code Sections 6400-6409)

Public Law 280 and Family Violence

This curriculum is intended to provide an overview of Public Law 280– State court's role in ensuring safety and protection for Native American victims of family violence— domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, and teen dating violence— in Indian County.

Family Violence Outline
Competencies and Learning Objectives 
Lesson Plan 
Family Violence Scenarios
Annotated Bibliography

Tribal Advocates Curriculum

The curriculum and appendices are intended for California lay legal tribal advocates in the field of domestic violence to assist them in navigating the state courts.

Trainees Guide 
Curriculum Evaluation Form
California Tribal Advocate Curriculum Powerpoint 
Tribal Advocates Curriculum Legal Portion

Tribal Communities and Domestic Violence Judge's Benchguide  (2013)

Elder Abuse in Tribal Communities Benchguide

Public Law 280 Jurisdiction Information


Judicial Toolkit on Federal Indian Law webpage

Court Toolkit for Tribal/State/Federal Administrators and Clerks.

Law Enforcement Tools

Domestic Violence Restraining Orders- this online course on CalDog is intended for court clerks, takes you through the restraining order request process, from the initial interaction with the person who wants a domestic violence restraining order through the hearing.



California Courts Protective Order Registry (CCPOR) Tribal Project 
This project provides read-only access by sharing restraining and protective order information, state court and tribal courts are better able to protect the public, particularly victims of domestic violence.

Domestic Abuse Self-Help (DASH) Tribal Project      
This project helps litigants obtain restraining orders in tribal courts and state courts. In this project, a lay tribal advocate works under the supervision of an attorney (known as the "reviewing attorney") to assist a tribal agency's client. The attorney, from any location, supervises the tribal advocate through the use of technology, training, and a review of the advocate's court documents.

Recognition and Enforcement of Tribal Protective Orders
This brochure describes how tribal courts and state courts are working together to ensure mutual recognition and enforcement of protective orders. 

State/Tribal Education, Partnerships, and Services (STEPS) to Justice— Domestic Violence
The brochure describes local educational services and other technical assistance for tribal and state court judges.

Tribal Protection Orders
This website, developed by the Tribal Law and Policy Institute is designed to provide both tribal and non-tribal entities with a clearinghouse of information and resources pertaining to the issuance and enforcement of protection orders.

Crossover Issues Relating to the Indian Child Welfare Act and Domestic Violence brochure.

Recognition and Enforcement of Tribal Protective Orders
This brochure describes how tribal courts and state courts are working together to ensure mutual recognition and enforcement of protective orders.

Sex Trafficking Resources

Congressional Research Office, Tribal Criminal Jurisdiction over Non-Indians in the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) Reauthorization and the SAVE Native Women Act