Project to Implement the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples in the United States

From CU and NARF:

The University of Colorado American Indian Law Program and Native American Rights Fund have teamed up on a Project to Implement the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples in the United States. Visit our new website ( for informational materials and upcoming interactive sessions to advance human rights in Indian Country. Among other things, the site features our 2020 Project Report and material on the applicability of the Declaration in various subject matters, with new information being added on a daily basis. This summer we will work with Professor Angela R. Riley’s Native Nations Law and Policy Center at UCLA School of Law to develop a Tribal Implementation Toolkit, and hope to collaborate with other institutions going forward! We’d love to hear from you.

CU/NARF Conference Pics

Kristen Carpenter
Dean James Anaya
John Echohawk
Heather Whiteman Runs Him, Dalee Sambo Dorough, Nathaniel Brown

Kristen Carpenter, James Anaya, Steven Moore, Greg Johnson
Rob Williams
Charles Wilkinson, Rebecca Tsosie, Kristen Carpenter
Erika Yamada, Alexey Tsykatev, Cristina Coc, Tracey Whare, Kunihiko Yoshida
Heather Whiteman Runs Him, Greg Bigler, Wenona Singel, Angela Riley, Carla Fredericks

Statement from the Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples on Child Separation at the Border


The United Nations Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples joins the concern expressed by the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights and others regarding the situation of families, children, and individuals being detained in the United States of America at its southern border with Mexico. We call on the United States immediately to reunite children, parents, and caregivers that have been separated to date, and to ensure their basic human rights to family, safety, and security.

In addition, the Expert Mechanism calls attention to the particular impact of the United States’ practices regarding international border detentions and prosecutions on indigenous peoples. Many of the individuals now being stopped at the border are of indigenous origin, including Kekchi, Tzutujil, Kacqchikel, and Mam-speakers and other Maya from Guatemala, as well as indigenous peoples from Honduras, El Salvador, Mexico, and other countries. In many instances, they are fleeing situations of economic, social, and political unrest in their homelands where they have been denied rights to self-determination and territory, and have faced discrimination and violence.

The Expert Mechanism expresses particular concern regarding the vulnerability of indigenous children. Many countries, including the United States, have a long history of forced removal of indigenous children from their families, a practice that is now universally condemned by the human rights communities and by federal law in the U.S. because of the trauma it causes to children, their families, and their communities.

More broadly, indigenous peoples, whether migrants or not, have rights under international
instruments including the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, supported by 148 nations across the world, including the United States. These include the right to maintain indigenous cultural identity, to be free from forced family separation, to speak their languages (and have translation services), to be free from discrimination and violence, and indeed to migrate. In some instances current international borders cross indigenous peoples’ homelands, including in the case of the Yaqui and Tohono O’odham people who have territory and family members on both side of the Mexico border. We call on the United States to recognize the particular situation of indigenous peoples in its border practices and policies and to uphold the rights and responsibilities set forth in the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

Also, here is Mark Trahant’s piece, our previous post with NAICJA’s statement, and NCJFCJ’s statement (which went out on our Twitter feed but not here).

Federal Court Rejects Trappers/Hunters Effort to Dismiss Challenge to Federal Implementation of Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (Rule 19!)

Here are the materials in Wildearth Guardians v. United States Fish & Wildlife Service (D. Mont.):

75 Motion to Dismiss

79 Federal Response

80 Wildearth Guardians Response

84 Reply

94 DCT Order

Federal Court Dismisses Action by “Traditional Authority and Miskitu Government-In-Exile” against Nicaragua

Here are the materials in Robertson v. Republic of Nicaragua (N.D. Cal.):

78 Amended Complaint

81 Motion to Dismiss

82 Motion for Sanctions

84 Response to Motion to Dismiss

85 Response to Motion for Sanctions

87 Reply in Support of Motion to Dismiss

92 DCT Order