The History and Spirit of ICWA

Click here to watch "The History and Spirit of ICWA".

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This video "The History and Spirit of ICWA" provides juvenile and family courts with historical context of Native Americans and child welfare.  The goals of this video is to provoke discussion and to further the court's understanding of why it is critical to ask if there is any Native American heritage at every hearing even if you know the family history.  Presented at the NCJFCJ 2011 Lead Judges Meeting. NCJFCJ will be posting more videos and publishing a technical assistance bulletin to provide juvenile and family courts with practice recommendations and tools to improve compliance with the letter of the ICWA as well as with the “spirit of ICWA” through services and supports (1). One of the most critical and ongoing steps is to develop respectful and authentic relationships with tribes to fully implement the ICWA and best serve Native children.  For further information or technical assistance please contact NCJFCJ at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..  (1) Following the "Spirit of ICWAâ" means providing culturally appropriate services to Native American families from non-federally recognized tribes within the juvenile dependency and delinquency systems.

(More information is available from the California Administrative Office of the Courts at