Indian Child Protection Act Research Paper

2357 Words 10 Pages
Putting Learning Into Practice: The Indian Child Welfare Act
Itumeleng Shadreck

Dr. Wayne Moore
Fall 2013

Historical Content
Prior to European conquest, Indian populations in North America were mainly communal and self-sustaining societies with organized political structures, moral codes, and religious beliefs adapted to the particular environment they inhabited. There was also tradition involving child rearing practices and child protection. Discovery and settlement by Europeans radically changed life for local Indians. As Europeans strived to gain the natural resources and land occupied by the Native Americans, Indian policy primarily consisted of treaties. Initially, these treaties addressed issues of trade and establishing
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2750). One such problem was whether or not the policy applied to Native American children who had not been a part of an Indian family or an Indian tribe. It was clarified that the ICWA applies to all Indian children, regardless of whether or not they had an affiliation with their tribe. Another problem was that efforts in involuntary child custody proceedings did not include extended family. The amendment required that extended family, tribe, Indian social service agencies, and Indian caregivers were all to be used as a resource. In cases of voluntary Indian child custody proceedings (i.e. placing an Indian child in a permanent adoptive home), it was not mandatory that tribes were notified of the proceedings. It is now required that Indian tribes be given detailed notices. In fact, a section was added to specify the content of the notices in proceedings. Similarly, although a tribe has the right to intervene in a voluntary child custody proceeding, they often were not notified until after adoptive placement had been approved. A timeline was clarified for the tribes right to intervene (i.e. files a notice of intent to intervene or written objection within 45 days of receiving notice). This was the case with extended family members, as well, and an amendment was made to notify extended families so they would have a right to intervene. Often, parents were not informed of their …show more content…
For example, in Alaska almost all Indian tribes are not on reservations. The ICWA was specific to Indian children who reside on reservations. The solution was to clarify that tribal jurisdiction in Alaska recognizes the State of Alaska and the tribes have simultaneous jurisdiction over child custody proceedings. This proved to be an issue with other tribes that did not live in areas defined as reservations (i.e. Oklahoma). Provisions were made to enable the ability of tribes without reservations to assume jurisdiction over child custody

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