American Indian & Alaskan Native Individuals and Criminal Justice Involvement

American Indian & Alaskan Native Individuals and Criminal Justice Involvement

This training provides an overview of American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) engagement with the justice system. Nationally, AI/AN individuals are incarcerated at a rate more than double that of White individuals. In states with large AI/AN populations, they are incarcerated at nearly seven times the rate of White individuals.

Although we know AI/AN populations are disproportionately represented throughout the criminal justice system, less is known about the factors that bring them into incarceration settings and the unique needs that arise for individuals in incarceration settings. Our gaps in knowledge are due to the fractured federal, state, and tribal justice systems with which AI/AN individuals interact. This training explores what we do know how about AI/AN individuals, families, and communities interact with the criminal justice system, their complex needs during those interactions, and culturally appropriate solutions and programs to improve the well-being of AI/AN individuals who are currently or were formerly incarcerated. This training is for anyone working in the criminal justice setting, including law enforcement officers, administrators, staff, social workers, case managers, or anyone looking to increase their knowledge and skills working with Indigenous individuals or populations in this context.

At the end of this training, trainees will understand:  

  • The prevalence of AI/AN individuals involved in the criminal justice system and how disproportionality in their justice involvement has grown over the last decade
  • How behavioral health disorders intersect with criminal justice system involvement for AI/AN individuals
  • The behavioral health needs of many AI/AN individuals who become involved in the criminal justice system
  • Current service utilization among AI/AN individuals and potential areas to build out services and programming to better meet their needs
  • What a cohesive community-based response would look like to address justice involvement among AI/AN individuals


Training length: 1 hour

Continuing Education Units (CEUs): This training earns 1 CEU. Attendees who wish to receive CEUs will receive a certificate of completion immediately upon earning an 80% or above on the training post-test.  They may use this certificate to verify CEUs earned by submitting it to their licensing board. 

Training type: Video

Training cost: $49.99 ON SALE NOW* $25.99 *Use code IJRD50off at checkout for a limited time. 

Need help or have questions? Contact Amberly Prykhodko at



Trainer: Tanya Renn, PhD, MSSW, MPH

Dr. Tanya Renn (she/her) has more than 10 years of experience working with incarcerated individuals and individuals leaving incarceration and returning home. In that time, she has co-led nearly a dozen research and evaluation projects that focused on understanding and intervention with a range of vulnerable individuals, families, and communities who are disproportionately impacted by criminal justice system involvement. She has worked on several projects involving justice-involved AI/AN women, to examine their unique needs and design programs to facilitate their success. Currently, she is investigating the intersection of experiences of trauma, substance misuse, and cultural factors for justice-involved AI/AN individuals living in Alaska. Dr. Renn is an Assistant Professor and is committed to advocating and advancing the science to better deter indigenous populations away from justice involvement and into culturally relevant community supports.


Learn more about the 'Race, Class, and Health disparities in the Criminal Justice System' training series here!