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For decades, FCNL’s Native American Advocacy Program has been an enduring ally to national Native American organizations and Indian communities engaged in policy advocacy. 

Since 1976, FCNL’s program has advocated consistently for the U.S. government to honor its promises.

We collaborate with national advocacy offices of faith organizations and with Native American organizations to lobby Congress and the administration for investments in Indian country, policy changes to benefit Native American communities and respect for tribal sovereignty.  We also provide information to Congress and the public on the rights and continuing struggles of Native peoples. 

This work takes us into all of the issue areas encountered by any government: land and borders; environment, energy, and natural resources; economic development; care for the safety and well-being of tribal citizens; protection of religion and cultural rights; and investment in the future through health and education.  Since 1976, FCNL’s program has advocated consistently for restorations and improvements in many areas covered by the promises made in hundreds of treaties.  The treaties may be broken, but the promises were permanent.  Examples of this work include:

  • The Indian Child Welfare Act
  • Violence Against Women Act
  • Indian Health Care Improvement Act
  • Native American Graves Protection Act
  • Native American Housing and Self-Determination Act
  • Language preservation programs
  • Funding for tribally operated and BIE schools
  • Protection of sacred sites

The Congressional Advocate on Native American Policy 

The congressional advocate on Native American policy manages the Native American Advocacy program, keeping track of legislation and funding proposals that affect Native Americans, communicating with Congress about selected bills and issues, and lobbying on legislation that is important to Indian country.    This position is a 27-month fellowship, with the final three months of the term overlapping with the advocate’s successor.

Working within FCNL’s vision to “honor the promises,” and to “seek a society with equity and justice for all”, the Congressional Advocate lobbies for achievable legislative change, in accordance with FCNL legislative policies outlined in the document, The World We Seek.

Applications for the next congressional advocate on Native American policy will open in 2021.

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The Native American Legislative Update is a monthly newsletter on the most important developments on Capitol Hill related to Indian Country.