ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Rural Alaska Native villages are receiving almost $5 million from the U.S. Justice Department to combat numerous public safety problems, including no law enforcement presence in some communities.
Tuesday’s announcement comes nearly two months after Attorney General William Barr met with tribal representatives, who told him about slow response times from authorities, violence against women and abuse of alcohol and drugs, including opioids in remote communities.
In June, Barr declared a law enforcement emergency in Alaska after visiting the state the previous month. The declaration clears the way for the Justice Department to award more than $10 million to combat crime in rural Alaska communities.
That includes the money announced Tuesday to help hire additional village and tribal officers and to pay for equipment and training.