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A Tribal Council is either: (1) a First Nations government in Canada or, an association of Native American bands in the United States; or, (2) the governing body for certain tribes within the United States or elsewhere (since ancient times). In both countries they are generally formed along regional, ethnic or linguistic lines.

Associations of tribesEdit

In Canada, the Indian band, usually consisting of one main community, is the fundamental unit of government. Bands may unite to form a tribal council, but they need not do so. Bands that do not belong to a tribal council are said to be independent. Bands may and do withdraw from tribal councils. Furthermore, the authority that bands delegate to their tribal council varies, with some tribal councils serving as a strong, central organization while others are granted limited power by their members.

In the United States, several sovereign American Indian Nations are organized as Tribal Councils. The Navajo Nation, or Dineh, were formally governed by the Navajo Tribal Council, known today as the Navajo Nation Council. The Crow Nation in Montana was once organized as the Crow Tribal Council. Since the late 20th century, the Crow Nation changed their constitution (which some people have opposed as an illegal action) and organized as a three-branch government with a ceremonial Crow Tribal General Council.[citation needed]

Governing bodiesEdit

Tribal councils in Canada and the United States have a somewhat different status. In the United States, the term usually describes the governing body of a tribe that is typically distinct from other tribes as a matter of geography, native language, religion and culture. The tribe, usually comprising a single Reservation (although some tribes have more than one, and many have none) is the basic unit of government. Federally recognized tribes in the United States are considered "domestic dependent nations", and they have sovereign status somewhat comparable to the individual American States. Different tribes may choose governance structures for themselves, but most tribes have adopted democratic governments in which a Tribal Council or the equivalent functions as a legislative body and an elected or appointed Chairman has an executive role comparable to a President or Prime Minister. On a few American Indian reservations such as the Hopi Reservation, an elected tribal democratic government operates in parallel with the tribe's traditional religious and secular government.

Tribal Councils in CanadaEdit


British ColumbiaEdit


New BrunswickEdit

Newfoundland and LabradorEdit

Northwest TerritoriesEdit

Nova ScotiaEdit

Nunavut Association of Municipalities The Nunavut Association of Municipalities (NAM) represents community officials across Nunavut. The association was formed to make important contributions to decisions about Nunavut communities and capital projects. The group provides a single voice for mayors and municipal administrators of the territory's 25 communities.


Prince Edward IslandEdit




Tribal Councils in the United StatesEdit

External linksEdit