AG Ferguson announces historic Tribal Consent and Consultation policy

  • Friday, May 10, 2019 12:47pm
  • News
Bob Ferguson

Bob Ferguson

Attorney General Bob Ferguson on Friday announced a new policy that requires the his office to obtain free, prior and informed consent before initiating a program or project that directly and tangibly affects tribes, tribal rights, tribal lands and sacred sites.

Ferguson also announced that his office will refrain from filing any litigation against a tribal government or tribal-owned business without first engaging in meaningful consultation to resolve the dispute, provided that doing so does not violate the rules of professional conduct.

This policy is the first of its kind in Washington state.

The Tribal Consent and Consultation policy is effective immediately.

“In furtherance of strengthening partnerships between Indian tribes and my office, I am announcing an official AGO policy requiring my office to achieve free, prior and informed consent before initiating a project or program that directly and tangibly affects Indian tribes, rights, tribal lands and sacred sites,” Ferguson said. “This is an historic step for the Attorney General’s Office and the state of Washington. I hope other government agencies across the state and the country take notice and consider similar steps.”

“Through his actions today, Attorney General Ferguson has listened to, learned from and followed through on the advocacy of countless Native American leaders nationwide and Indigenous leaders globally who have defended the sovereignty and rights of their peoples,” said Quinault Indian Nation President Fawn Sharp. “By adopting ‘free, prior, and informed consent’ as the basis of his Administration’s interactions with Tribal Governments, Attorney General Ferguson has become a global standard bearer for recognizing the full sovereignty and political equality of Indigenous peoples.”

“Today, Attorney General Ferguson took a historic step forward in the relationship between Washington state and Washington’s Tribes by adopting Tribal relations policies founded on the principle of ‘free, prior, and informed consent,’” said Samish Indian Nation Chairman Tom Wooten. “By committing to work with Washington’s Tribes on the basis of true equality and collaboration, Attorney General Ferguson is demonstrating the vision and inclusive leadership we will need to confront immense challenges like climate change, homelessness, and the opioid crisis that impact all of Washington’s communities.”

More in News

Construction to affect a stretch of West Valley Highway North

On Wednesday, May 29 paving work by Benjamin Asphalt for ZAYO Group… Continue reading

Reporter file photo
Memorial Day Veterans Remembrance Ceremony returns to Auburn’s Veterans Memorial Park

A Memorial Day Veterans Remembrance Ceremony is set for 11 a.m., Monday,… Continue reading

House majority leader discusses business development, homelessness in South King County

House Majority Leader and Rep. Pat Sullivan, D-Covington, provided an update on… Continue reading

Free summer meals available to eligible children in the Auburn ares

The Auburn Valley YMCA is offering free summer meals for any child… Continue reading

King County’s $5 million derelict boat problem

When a boat sinks, it costs a lot to bring it up, with millions being spent since 2003 on removals.

Self-driving cars: Heaven or hell?

Depending on factors, traffic and environmental impacts could become better or worse.

Mid-spring splash

Auburn’s Game Farm Park makes way for fun and games, food and services for people and their four-legged pals

Governor signs bill creating commission on LGBTQ inequities

The state’s newly created state LGBTQ Commission will meet Saturday with stakeholders… Continue reading

Most Read