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Tribal Relations

Per RCW 43.376.020, the Department of Corrections (DOC) makes a reasonable effort to collaborate with Indian tribes in the development of policies, agreements, and program implementation that directly affects tribes. There are 29 federally recognized tribes in the State of Washington.


The secretary shall designate a tribal relations liaison who interacts with tribes and reports directly to the secretary.

The tribal relations liaison is responsible for assisting the department in developing and implementing agency policies that promote effective communication and collaboration between the department and tribal governments, and coordinating training of departmental employees in cultural competency in providing effective services to tribal governments and tribal members (RCW 43.376.030).

Tribal Statistics
40.1% Recidivism Rate

40.1% of inmates identifying as American Indian/Alaska Native returned to prison within 36 months of release. (March 2019)

5.5% of Inmates

5.5% of the Department's incarcerated population, or approximately 957 individuals, identify as American Indian/Alaska Native. (March 2019)

1.5% of Staff

1.5% of staff, or 129 individuals, identify as American Indian/Alaska Native. (June 2019)

1.3% of Citizens

1.3% of Washington state's population, or approximately 94, 754 individuals, identify as American Indian/Alaska Native. (U.S. Census Bureau, July 2018)

Pow Wow Schedule

A community member cannot attend a pow wow unless they first contact the correctional facility religious coordinator or Winona Stevens by phone at (253) 212-9227 or email at least 45 days prior to the event.

Date & Location


Laws & Regulations

Below are the state laws (RCWs) that apply to and/or relate to Tribal Relations.


Per RCW 43.376.020, the Department must submit an annual report to the governor's office on agency activities involving tribal relations.

Resource Links

Department of Corrections is proud to be a workgroup member organization of the Governor's Indian Health Advisory Council.