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Tribal and Government Relations

Tribal and Government Relations plays a vital role in maintaining respectful and effective relationships between tribal communities and government agencies.

Ensuring Mutual Respect and Understanding

Without Tribal and Government Relations, the important relationship between tribal communities and government agencies can quickly deteriorate, leading to misunderstandings, mistrust, and even conflict.

UAII is committed to facilitating the exchange of information, ideas, and feedback essential to ensuring tribal sovereignty and rights are upheld, and that our community’s unique cultural heritage and values are respected and preserved.

We’re proud to work with these partners

LAPD Transit Services Bureau

UAII is partnering with the LAPD on the inaugural Native American Leadership Academy to cultivate a foundation of meaningful partnerships and mutual respect, share resources, and address the critical issue of missing and murdered indigenous people.

UCLA American Indian Studies Department

We partner to provide tutoring for American Indian youth at our Youth Services Center and with the Working in Tribal Communities course to support undergraduates with internships and fieldwork opportunities.

Torres-Martinez Tribal Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)

We partner with TANF on its programs that provide assistance to Native American families with children with a particular focus on traditional values and cultural awareness.

Gabrieleno (Tongva) San Gabriel Band of Mission Indians

We partner with the tribe on efforts to preserve its cultures and traditions and pass them down to younger generations through dance performances and educational programs.

National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development

We partner on the Center’s efforts to assist American Indian Tribes and tribal people with business and economic development.

LAUSD Title VI American Indian/Alaskan Native and Indigenous Education Program

We partner on efforts to meet the unique academic, cultural, and linguistic needs of American Indian students so they can meet state academic standards and maintain our traditions and cultures.

Pukuu Cultural Community Services

We partner on the One Stop Emergency Service to provide emergency assistance to low-income American Indians in Los Angeles County.

Los Angeles City/County Native American Indian Commission

We partner with the Commission on its primary purpose to increase the acquisition and application of funding resources to address the socioeconomic problems of American Indians in Los Angeles City and County.

American Indian Chamber of Commerce of California

UAII is a member of the Chamber and works to provide networking opportunities and support for American Indian business people in California through mentorships and educational programs.

What We Do

Our main objective is to improve the relationship between the government and federally-recognized tribal governments by working closely together. We do this in a number of ways:

  • Tribal Leader Coordination: We serve as the point of contact between UAII Executive Leadership and tribal leaders across the country to collaborate between tribal communities, government agencies and other organizations on the implementation of successful policies and initiatives.
  • Policy Engagement Coordination: We communicate and collaborate with elected officials to ensure UAII’s interest are represented in key policies, providing Insights and recommendations that help inform policy decisions.
  • Local Community Partnerships and Services: We develop partnerships with city, county, and state agencies to offer services and resources that address the social, economic, and environmental issues important to the AI/AN community, providing insights and recommendations regarding partnerships for healthcare, education, housing, food assistance, and other support programs.

Advocating for Tribal Sovereignty and Rights

Federally-recognized tribes possess rights that cannot be encroached upon by other sovereign entities, such as other states. These rights might be limited by certain regulations, such as treaties, acts of Congress, executive orders, federal administration agreements, and court decisions.

Tribes have the authority to form their own governments, make and enforce laws (both civil and criminal), tax their citizens, determine tribal membership (tribal citizenship), license and regulate activities within their jurisdiction, zone land, and exclude individuals from tribal land.

Under this authority, UAII remains steadfast in our commitment to
advocate and preserve AI/AN rights and our way of life.

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Contact the Tribal and Government Relations team at (213.202.3790) to learn more about our advocacy efforts.