Need for Resources

American Indians make up a disproportionate number of inmates, relative to their population.1 Many of them, particularly urban Indians and those who have lived their entire lives off-reservation, have not learned much about their specific tribal histories and cultural practices, and wish to spend their prison time educating themselves. For the past 16 years, through word of mouth, prisoners have written to UCLA’s American Indian Studies Center, requesting books and other reading materials that inform them about their tribes. Even Native peoples incarcerated in tribal facilities have a great need for books and other resources, as many tribal jails are operating above their capacity.2 But don’t take it from us: listen to their own words: click here.

 

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1 See Political Research Associates, “Defending Justice: An Activist Resource Kit,” esp. p. 2, http://publiceye.org/defendingjustice/index.html; Office of Hawaiian Affairs, “The Disparate Treatment of Native Hawaiians in the Criminal Justice System,” esp. p. 53, http://caphawaii.files.wordpress.com/2012/07/disparate-treatment-of-native-hawaiians-in-cj.pdf; Todd Epp, “Incarceration Rates High for Native American and Hispanic Men in South Dakota, KSOO “The TALK of Sioux Falls!” October 6, 2013.

2 Todd D. Minton, “Jails in Indian Country, 2012,” U.S. Department of Justice Office of Justice Programs, Bureau of Justice Statistics Bulletin, June 2013, NCJ 242187.