Alaska Tribal Justice Resource Center

Providing Training and Technical Assistance to Alaska Tribal Justice Systems

Circle Peacemaking

Circle Peacemaking is a style of dispute resolution that brings together wrongdoers, families, victims, leaders, community members, and service providers to discuss the situation and to decide as a group what an appropriate sentence should be. It is a very therapeutic and restorative approach to justice. It is especially well-suited in addressing substance abuse associated crimes.

Organized Village of Kake

Circle Peacemaking

Kake, Alaska

Restoration of Traditional Methods

3 Types of Circles:

  • School-based
  • Community-based
  • Tribal court-based

Circle Peacemaking

Revised Handbook 2013 by OVK

This manual describes the history of the Kake Circle Peacemaking and provides step-by step guidance for determining whether this approach is right for your community and the practical steps necessary to make it happen. The appendices include forms and the more routine documents necessary for success. 

Circle Peacemaking Training at the Rural CAP training facility

Kake Circle Peacemaking

Guideline 2016

  • Guidelines for Circle Peacemaking
  • Keepers of the Circle (Facilitators)
  • Principles Common to all Circles
  • Circle Peacemaking Process
  • Changes from Courts to Circle Peacemaking
  • Kake Circle Peacemaking Flow Chart

Keex' Kwaan Judicial Peacemaking Code

Learn about Kake's restoration of traditional methods

  • Keex’ Kwaan Tribal Court Structure
  • Keex’ Kwaan Court Procedures 
  • Keex’ Kwaan Court of Appeals
  • Kake Youth Circle Peacemaking
  • Certification of Adoption

Keex' Kwaan Domestic Relations Code

Domestic Code

The purpose of this Code is to provide policies and guidance for the KK Government to an active role in providing for the health, safety, and welfare of the Kake people, to preserve and strengthen family ties whenever possible, to protect and preserve tribal heritage and cultural identity of the persons within the Tribe’s jurisdiction, and to promote cooperation with the Tribe by other courts and agencies in fulfilling the purposes of this Code.

Kenaitze Indian Tribe

Circle Peacemaking

Introduction to KIT

Kenaitze Indian Tribe (KIT)

The Circle is administered at the Tribal Courthouse in Old Town Kenai and serves different purposes, but most simply is a place where people come to have important or difficult discussions in a good way.  The tribe has operated the program since the mid-2000s.

Ts’iłq’u Circle Brochure 2019

KIT Tribal Circle Handbook

Published December 3, 2014

This handbook serves as a general guide to the process followed for Tribal Circles conducted by the Kenaitze Indian Tribe, Kenai, Alaska. Some of the policies and procedures will be changed or modified as we strive to serve the needs of everyone involved in the process.

Kenaitze Traditional Conflict Resolution Program (TCRP)

Tribal Court Case

Learn the Kenaitze Tribal Court Procedures regarding the Traditional Conflict Resolution Program (TCRP) also known as Ts’iłq’u Circle.

Tribal Court Code Amended KIT

Ordinance-99-01

  • Kenaitze Tribal Court Structure
  • Kenaitze Court Procedures

Indigenous Peacemaking Initiative

Native American Rights Fund

About Indigenous Peacemaking Initiative

The Native American Rights Fund (NARF)

The mission of the Indigenous Peacemaking Initiative (IPI) is to support Native peoples in restoring sustainable peacemaking practices by:
  • Maintaining a Collection of
    Tribal Peacemaking Laws
  • Facilitating Training
  • Providing Technical Assistance
  • Engaging in Advocacy

Tribal Models

Indigenous Peacemaking Initiative

We can provide technical assistance with designing peacemaking courts, developing culturally specific frameworks, and drafting peacemaking laws. 

View and access full resources relating to: 

  • Tribal Peacemaking Program Profiles
  • Tribal Peacemaking Laws
  • Peacemaking Publications
  • Frequently Asked Questions

Circle Peacemaking Resources

AK Court System - Restorative Justice Programs

FLOW CHART: Restorative Justice Referral Process (Chart 2)

Learn the steps of how to refer a case to the Restorative Justice Program. 

Tribal Justice Systems

Tribal Healing to Wellness Courts - Alaska

A comprehensive list of all Tribal Justice Systems in Alaska.

The Need for Community Involvement In The Restoration of Victims, Offenders, and Villages

Jeff May - University of Alaska Fairbanks

Community Justice Initiatives in the Galena District Court

Jeff May - University of Alaska Fairbanks

Circle Process CDA Workshop

Published on February 2019: Lisa Jaeger

Circle Sentencing, Circle Peacemaking, Restorative Justice Circles:

  • Civil Diversion Agreement
  • Implementation Workshop
  • Tanana Chiefs Region

Tips on Facilitating Restorative Justice Circles

Published on July 2019: Lisa Jaeger

Restorative justice circles, circle peacemaking, or circle sentencing as it might be called, is a restorative justice initiative that includes community members in designing fair and appropriate sentences. 

Alaska Tribal Justice Resource Center

Training & Technical Assistance Support

731 East 8th Avenue Anchorage, AK 99501

This is a RurAL CAP affiliated program.

This project was supported by Grant No. 2019-IC-BX-K004 awarded by the Bureau of Justice Assistance. 

The Bureau of Justice Assistance is a component of the Department of Justice’s Office of Justice Programs, which also includes:  The Bureau of Justice Statistics, The National Institute of Justice, The Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, The Office for Victims of Crime, and the SMART Office. 

Points of view or opinions in this document are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the official position or policies of the U.S. Department of Justice.