[Federal Register Volume 81, Number 203 (Thursday, October 20, 2016)]
[Page 72607]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2016-25374]



Bureau of Indian Affairs

[178A2100DD/AAKC001030/A0A501010.999900 253G]

Model Indian Juvenile Code

AGENCY: Bureau of Indian Affairs, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of availability.


SUMMARY: The Bureau of Indian Affairs is announcing availability of the 
final version of the updated 2016 Model Indian Juvenile Code. The 
updated Model Indian Juvenile Code is intended as a tool to assist 
Indian Tribes in creating or revising their juvenile codes.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Natasha Anderson, Deputy Associate 
Director, Tribal Justice Support Directorate, Office of Justice 
Services, Bureau of Indian Affairs, (202) 513-0367 or 
[email protected].


I. Background

    The BIA initially contracted with the National Indian Justice 
Center to develop the first Code in 1988 after the passage Public Law 
99-570, title IV, section 4221, which required the creation of a 
``Model Indian Juvenile Code'' (25 U.S.C. 2454).
    Most codes should be updated on a regular basis; and it has been 
over 25 years since the initial Model Indian Juvenile Code was created. 
Additionally, after the passage of the Tribal Law and Order Act of 
2010, a Memorandum of Agreement among DOI, DOJ, and DHHS was developed 
to establish a framework for collaboration that results in the 
coordination of resources and programs. The MOA specifically referenced 
25 U.S.C. 2454 and the Model Indian Juvenile Code.
    Since the creation of the initial Model Indian Juvenile Code, much 
has changed in the field of juvenile justice. Since the late 1980s, 
many jurisdictions have engaged in reforms of their juvenile justice 
systems in response to research finding that the standard juvenile 
justice system model used in the United States showed no impact to 
juvenile delinquency and may have, in fact, increased delinquency 
rates. Research has also found that adolescent brains develop later in 
life than previously thought. Researchers, advocates and policy makers 
urge changes to the more punitive models of juvenile justice and 
encourage systems that are more restorative.
    After contracting with the Center of Indigenous Research & Justice 
(CIRJ), the BIA shepherded an ``information gathering phase'' beginning 
with a workshop to discuss a plan of action in updating the Code, at 
the Office on Victims of Crime's National Indian Nations Conference in 
Palm Springs, California on December 12, 2014. In April 2015, BIA made 
available a Discussion Draft on the BIA Web site for review and 
comment. The CIRJ contractor presented details on the Discussion Draft 
at the 2015 Annual Federal Bar Indian Law Conference. The BIA held a 
listening session on the Discussion Draft at the 2015 National Congress 
of American Indians' Mid-Year Conference in Saint Paul, Minnesota. NCAI 
hosted a follow-up webinar in November 2015 on Juvenile Justice with a 
focus on the principles of the Model Indian Juvenile Code update.
    On February 24, 2016, the BIA announced the availability of the 
Draft 2016 Model Indian Juvenile Code for Consultation. Four telephonic 
Tribal consultation sessions were held on March 30-31 and April 13-14, 
2016 in addition to an in-person listening session on April 6, 2016, at 
the Annual Conference of the National Indian Child Welfare Association. 
Written Comments were also accepted with a deadline of May 27, 2016.

II. Summary of the Model Indian Juvenile Code

    The 2016 Model Indian Juvenile Code is divided into three 
categories: (1) Delinquency; (2) Child in Need of Services; and (3) 
    The 2016 Model Indian Juvenile Code focuses on several principles 
including, but not limited to:
     Ability to divert out of formal process at each decision 
     Embeds right to counsel for juveniles in delinquency/
     Restricts use of detention;
     Commentary on choices made in the code and discussion of 
options for implementation--including diversion examples;
     Distinguishing between delinquent acts and need for 
    [cir] For delinquent acts, focus on supervision, treatment and 
     Process ensuring rights of parties; and
     Coordination of services.
    We have considered the comments received on the draft; and now 
issue the updated and annotated Model Indian Juvenile Code available 
at: http://www.bia.gov/cs/groups/xojs/documents/document/idc2-047015.pdf or by contacting the person listed in the FOR FURTHER 
INFORMATION CONTACT section of this notice. The updated Code is 
available in both an Annotated PDF and a Microsoft Word version which 
can be adapted for each Tribe's needs. Further information is available 
on the Tribal Justice Support Directorate's page at http://www.bia.gov/WhoWeAre/BIA/OJS/ojs-services/ojs-tjs/index.htm.

    Dated: October 7, 2016.
Lawrence Roberts,
Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary--Indian Affairs.
[FR Doc. 2016-25374 Filed 10-19-16; 8:45 am]