The Indian Child Welfare Act Of 1978 Essay
The Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) of 1978, states that Congress assumes the responsibility to protect and preserve Indian tribes and their children (ICWA, 1978). The act acknowledges federally recognized tribes as having sovereignty and dictates that tribes must be involved in decisions about the welfare of Indian children who are members of their tribe. However, this social problem continues today as American Indian children are still being removed from their homes at alarming rates (Bussey & Lucero, 2013). This review seeks to examine the Indian Child Welfare Act of 1978 and answer the question, is the ICWA successful as a policy without supplemental state polices? Ultimately, this question is concerned with the value of social justice and whether or not the ICWA as a standalone policy is successful at decreasing this social inequity.
The History of Indian Child Welfare and the ICWA of 1978
The Act was created to address the disparity in the number of Indian children being removed from their home in comparison to the general population (Bussey, et al., 2013). However, the roots of this issue stem from a larger social problem of how the United States has systemically treated Native Americans unjustly and failed to address tribes as sovereign nations within its borders. Bussey and Lucero’s (2013) article concluded that this issue of social justice developed because Native American children were…