Cook Inlet Tribal Council Receives 2013 FBI Director’s Community Leadership Award
|FBI Anchorage January 13, 2014|
Deirdre L. Fike, Special Agent in Charge (SAC) of the FBI in Alaska, announced today that Cook Inlet Tribal Council (CITC) is the 2013 recipient of the FBI Director’s Community Leadership Award (DCLA). Each FBI field office selects one individual or organization each year to receive this prestigious award.
Since 1990, the DCLA has been a means for the FBI to publicly recognize the achievements of individuals and organizations that make extraordinary contributions to crime and violence prevention and education in their communities.
CITC provides educational, employment training, recovery and re-entry services, and child and family services to Alaska Native and American Indian people living in the Cook Inlet Region of Alaska.
CITC convened and led a group of 10 local, non-profit, non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to explore and identify actions the state of Alaska could take to prevent and reduce sex trafficking and provide assistance to victims. The group was later named the Alaska NGO Working Group on Sex Trafficking (the working group). The working group issued a final report with recommendations for state action. This unprecedented CITC-led initiative provided a valuable perspective to lawmakers on the historical human trafficking issues facing Alaska Natives.
CITC dedicated full-time staff to the working group. CITC recognized that Alaska’s children and young adults, particularly Alaska Natives, are vulnerable to sex traffickers and has worked diligently to ensure that the working group’s final report informed the state of Alaska’s policy and legal response to this difficult issue.
SAC Fike said, “Cook Inlet Tribal Council has demonstrated a strong commitment to protecting Alaskans from sex trafficking. The recommendations outlined by the working group and adopted by the governor’s task force are expected to have a significant impact on the safety of the children of Alaska.”
Gloria O’Neill, president and chief executive officer for CITC, stated, “Alaska Native women are disproportionally represented among those at risk of sex trafficking. It’s vital our Alaska service providers are trained to recognize the warning signs.”
“I appreciate Alaska First Lady Sandy Parnell’s leadership in bringing the severity of the sex trafficking issue to our attention. The FBI and the Anchorage Police Department Vice Unit’s commitment to solving these cases and supporting victims is nothing short of remarkable. Cook Inlet Tribal Council applauds their efforts,” said O’Neill.