Tribal Healing to Wellness Court Publication Series
The Tribal Law and Policy Institute has developed comprehensive Tribal Healing to Wellness Court publications as part of the Tribal Healing to Wellness Court Technical Assistance Project Resource Publication Series. The full series is as follows:
Tribal Healing to Wellness Courts: Formalizing Healing to Wellness Courts in Tribal Law (2022), tracks the ways in which Tribes have drafted Wellness Courts into tribal law. Tribal Healing to Wellness Courts are restorative justice components of the Tribal Court. To the extent they operate a docket, adjudicate cases, and most critically, heal and restore members and the community, some Tribes have noted their existence in the Tribal code. Because each Tribe is structurally and culturally unique, there is no one correct way to promulgate a Wellness Court into Tribal law, or if that exercise is even necessary. This publication identifies the considerations for code drafting, identifies variations, and pushes Tribes to contemplate how the Wellness Court operates in relation to other parts of the Tribal judiciary and Tribal law.
Tribal Healing to Wellness Courts: Intergovernmental Collaboration (2021), is intended to assist Tribal Healing to Wellness Courts interested in building intergovernmental collaborations, including tribal-state collaborations. Whether a Wellness Court has been operational for decades or is still in the planning process, collaboration is essential. This resource frames the subject by providing a brief history of Tribal Healing to Wellness Courts, discusses some common traits found in existing collaborations, and then uses those common traits to discuss actual collaborations that are operating in the Tribal Wellness Court context.
Tribal Healing to Wellness Courts: The Key Components, 2nd ed. (2014), is designed to provide suggested key components and recommended practices for tribal justice systems to consider as they design, develop, and implement a Tribal Healing to Wellness Court that meets the needs of their community. This publication is organized around ten key components, adapted for tribes, which describe the basic elements of Tribal Healing to Wellness Courts. The purpose of each component is explained, followed by suggested practices, and a real-world example of the component being applied by active Tribal Healing to Wellness Courts. Tribal Healing to Wellness Courts: The Key Components, 1st ed. (2003)
Tribal Healing to Wellness Courts: Treatment Guidelines, 2nd ed. (2017), is designed to provide tribal communities with an overview of Western substance abuse treatment strategies that have been developed by drug court programs over the past several years and that tribal programs might consider adapting, along with traditional healing practices. This guideline draws upon drug court standards and best practices, and the experiences of hundreds of tribal and state adult and juvenile drug court programs, operating in various environments and serving a wide range of individuals addicted to alcohol and/or other drugs. Tribal Healing to Wellness Courts: Treatment Guidelines for Adults and Juveniles (2002 draft)
Tribal Healing to Wellness Courts: Case Management (2018), provides Wellness Courts and their staff a guide to effective case management and the case manager role. This resource discusses the drug court case management standards, the functions of case management within a Wellness Court, the models and ethics of case management, data and evaluation, and the role of case management can be functionally and ethically shared by other members of the Wellness Court team. This appendix of this publication includes models of case management, vicarious trauma, sample job descriptions, sample participant progress reports, and sample Wellness Court data values.
Tribal Healing to Wellness Courts: The Judicial Bench Book (2016)
The role of the Healing to Wellness Court differs dramatically from the adversarial trial court judge, both in mechanics and in philosophy. In Wellness Court, the judge serves as the captain or the coach of the team, focused on healing and collaboration. This publication orients and serves the Wellness Court judge while on the bench. The first section provides examples of key component performance in relation to component principles. The second section overviews key Wellness Court processes and procedures. Both sections include Bench Cards intended to serve as tools that package relevant information in an abbreviated format. Tribal Healing to Wellness Courts: The Judge’s Bench Book (2002 draft).
- Bench Card 1: Key Component 1
- Bench Card 2: Key Component 2
- Bench Card 3: Key Component 3
- Bench Card 4: Key Component 4
- Bench Card 5: Key Component 5
- Bench Card 6: Key Component 6
- Bench Card 7: Key Component 7
- Bench Card 8: Key Component 8
- Bench Card 9: Key Component 9
- Bench Card 10: Key Component 10
- Bench Card 11: Transfer In
- Bench Card 12: Referral
- Bench Card 13: Eligibility & Acceptance
- Bench Card 14: Initial Hearing
- Bench Card 15: Staffing Meeting
- Bench Card 16: Incentives & Sanctions
- Bench Card 17: Review Hearing
- Bench Card 18: Termination
- Bench Card 19: Graduation
Bench Card 20: Closure - Transfer Back
Tribal Healing to Wellness Courts: The Policies and Procedures Guide (2015), is the quintessential tool for the Healing to Wellness Court, documenting the structure and spirit of the Court. This publication provides an overview of the key considerations for what should be included in the manual, including team roles and responsibilities, phase systems, alcohol and drug testing, and statutory provisions. Rather than detailing one “model” manual, this publication provides excerpts from over fifteen operational manuals in order to preview the level of legal and cultural diversity that is possible within a Healing to Wellness Court.
Overview of Tribal Healing to Wellness Courts, 2nd ed. (2014), offers an overview of Tribal Healing to Wellness Courts, also known at Tribal Drug Courts. This publications explores some of the unique opportunities and challenges faced in implementing and operating a Healing to Wellness Court. Common challenges include adapting the drug court concept to include alcohol dependency and abuse treatment, accounting for the unique jurisdictional factors present in Indian country, and ensuring sustainability. Common opportunities include addressing the specific cultural needs of the tribal nation, engaging in judicial innovation, and providing an alternative to incarceration. Healing to Wellness Courts: A Preliminary Overview of Tribal Drug Courts (2002)
Tribal Healing to Wellness Courts: Program Development Guide (2002 Draft) provides step-by-step recommendations for design, development, and implementation of Tribal Healing to Wellness Court programs from a practical standpoint. It is designed to assist steering committees and planning groups as they (1) use team-based approaches; (2) gain knowledge of Healing to Wellness Court concepts; (3) incorporate the ten key components; (4) help establish policies and procedures suitable to the needs of the tribal community; (5) guide the court to integrate available resources; (6) develop interagency agreements; (7) incorporate a management information system to track participants and services; and (8) identify possible problem areas.
Perceptions of Methamphetamine Use in Three Western Tribal Communities: Implications for Child Abuse in Indian Country (2007) In an attempt to explore the increasing concerns raised by the emerging methamphetamine epidemic in Indian country, professionals from three Western Tribal communities were asked to complete a survey about their perceptions of meth us and implications for child abuse in the communities in which they worked. This study was funded through the Training and Technical Assistance grant that the Tribal Law and Policy Institute receives for Children’s Justice Act Partnerships in Indian Communities to assist tribes in addressing serious child abuse. The tribes and individuals that participated in the study were guaranteed anonymity due to the sensitive nature of the questions being asked. However, each Tribal Council provided permission for the surveys to be conducted within their service areas.
Tribal Healing to Wellness Courts: Needs Assessment Report (2010) As part of a grant from the Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) to provide training and technical assistance for Tribal Healing to Wellness Courts, the Tribal Law and Policy Institute (TLPI) sent out a Needs Assessment Survey in November of 2009. The survey was sent to over 90 tribes that either currently have an active Wellness Court, or have had a Wellness Court at some time in the past but it is no longer functioning. Attention was given to ensure that the current 13 BJA Wellness Court grantees completed the survey. The primary purpose of the survey was to gain insight into the most pressing needs among active Wellness Courts, as well as to determine the needs of courts that are no longer functioning, so that TLPI could focus our efforts on the most relevant training and technical assistance. This report summarizes the results of this survey and provides an analysis of the implications for training and technical assistance, BJA, and Tribal Healing to Wellness Courts.
Healing to Wellness Courts: Therapeutic Jurisprudence, Joseph Thomas Flies-Away & Carrie E. Garrow, 2013 Mich St. L. Rev. 403 (2013).
This law review article by two experienced Healing to Wellness Court Judges and technical assistance providers explores Healing to Wellness Courts as a less adversarial approach concerned with healing (treatment), personal responsibility, and accountability. Part I defines Healing to Wellness Courts as tribal renditions of drug courts and describes the connection to therapeutic justice. Part II describes and discusses plus (+) spirituality. Part III depicts the correlation between Healing to Wellness Courts and human rights. Finally, Part IV contends that tribal governments and the federal government must support, build, and systematically institutionalize Healing to Wellness Courts.
Learn more at Wellness Court Resources