Legal Services for Low Income Band Members
Onamia, Minn. – The Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe recently launched the Mille Lacs Band Legal Aid department, which provides legal services free of charge to low-income enrolled Band members related to legal matters arising in Aitkin, Benton, Crow Wing, Hennepin, Kanabec, Mille Lacs, Morrison, Pine, and Ramsey counties. The program is a part of the Mille Lacs Band Department of Justice.
“Before we had an in-house legal team, Band members often had limited access to representation due to affordability and other factors,” said Rjay Brunkow, Mille Lacs Band Solicitor General.
Mille Lacs Band Legal Aid consists of three attorneys and a managing attorney who specialize in a wide range of civil and criminal issues, including family, education, housing, and criminal defense law. They also provide probate services in tribal court. The attorneys received special training about the Mille Lacs Band’s history and culture, which helps them understand Band members’ unique needs and circumstances.
“We strive to be strong advocates for our clients while being cognizant that we are a reflection of the proud community of the Mille Lacs Band,” said Christopher Sailors, managing attorney of Mille Lacs Band Legal Aid. “We understand the traditions and history of the Mille Lacs Band and always keep that in mind when working with our clients.”
About the Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe
The Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe is a self-governing, federally recognized Indian tribe located in East Central Minnesota. The Band has more than 4,000 enrolled members, for whom it provides a wide variety of programs and services.