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Displaying items by tag: ICWA - CLARO

ABA Journal - August 13, 2019
Resolution 115C, declaring that the Indian Child Welfare Act is constitutional, was easily approved by the ABA House of Delegates on Tuesday. The Indian Child Welfare Act was passed in 1978 to address the fact that states remove Indian children from their parents at high rates. Because those children were not often placed with members of their own tribes, that high rate was hurting tribes' ability to pass on their cultures to the next generation.

Also: Editorial: ICWA ruling a victory for tribes: https://www.tahlequahdailypress.com/opinion/editorials/editorial-icwa-ruling-a-victory-for-tribes/article_d70b9f12-6d72-5de7-a80b-3064a3f7ea6c.html



Tuesday, 19 June 2018 14:16

ICWA 2016 Regulations

Here is a link to helpful ICWA resources – it also includes the ICWA 2016 final regulations.


Additionally, I have included questions and answers from last session that were either not addressed during the session or needed further research. 


Question 1:  So ... the outline says clear and convincing for ICWA removal ... but Brooke said beyond a reasonable doubt.

Answer:  The outline is correct, the standard for removal is clear and convincing evidence.  Beyond a reasonable doubt however, is the standard in TPR cases for ICWA.  If I said during the course that beyond a reasonable doubt applies to removal, it was just me mis-speaking.  To reiterate:

Removal = clear and convincing

TPR = beyond a reasonable doubt


Question 2: Would the Youngberg v. Romeo case include foster children in its definition of "institutionalized" children who are dependent on the state?

Answer:  Yes, it includes any person who is in the custody of the state (ie – foster care, detention, jail, mental health institution).  There have been a number of class action law suits on behalf of children in foster care alleging that the state was not adequately providing for their care. 


Question 3:  The Red Book was not clear about whether ICWA actually applies to delinquency cases (DL cases). You said ICWA is inapplicable in DL cases. Are there any recent cases or does this remain unsettled law?

Answer:  ICWA does not apply to juvenile delinquency proceedings in which the alleged crime committed by the child would also be a crime if committed by an adult – with the following caveat: ICWA may also apply in a juvenile delinquency proceeding where the basis for the proceeding is a criminal act by the child, but the proposed out-of-home placement is based upon the fitness of the parents rather than the criminal act by the child.

ICWA does apply to status offenses – those that would not be a crime if committed by an adult. 



Best Regards,

Brooke N. Silverthorn, JD, CWLS

Director of Legal and Policy Advocacy
National Association of Counsel for Children
13123 E. 16th Avenue, B390
Aurora, CO  80045
(303) 864-5323


Monday, 14 May 2018 12:20

Indian Child Welfare Act (Audio)

Indian Child Welfare Act (Audio)

KYUK - May 11, 2018

Valerie Andrew, AVCP Department of Child Welfare Services Director, stopped by for Coffee at KYUK to discuss the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) and let us know about AVCP's monitoring and expression of tribal rights in native child welfare cases. We also put a call out to potential foster parents in the delta region as we currently see about ten percent of foster care being delivered by homes outside of our local community.


RESOURCE: Public Media for Alaska's Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta

Pathways to Tribal Title IV-E: Tribal Title IV-E Options.
Child Welfare Capacity Building Collaborative.

The Collaborative is a partnership among three centers — the Center for Tribes, Center for States, and Center for Courts. This new structure is designed to help child welfare agencies and courts in states, tribes, and territories to build capacity and improve practice. The Collaborative, consisting of three Centers, delivers services that are innovative, outcome -driven, and informed by the best available data and evidence.

The Children's Bureau provides matching funds to tribal organizations, states, and territories to help them operate every aspect of their child welfare systems — from the prevention of child abuse and neglect to the support of permanent placements through adoption and subsidized guardianship. Title IV-E of the Social Security Act provides funds for tribes and states to provide foster care, transitional independent living programs for children, guardianship assistance, and adoption assistance for children with special needs. Pathways to Tribal Title IV-E is provided for informational purposes and to assist tribes in determining if applying for direct Title IV-E funding or pursuing a Tribal -State Agreement might be an option for their tribe. Of course, all Tribal Nations are unique and possess their own customs, traditions and the way they work on a day-to-day basis. It is important for tribes to understand Title IV-E requirements when considering direct Title IV-E funding or a Tribal-State Agreement which are detailed in the federal Title IV-E statute, regulations and official Children’s Bureau policy.
In this document you will find the following information:
•Authority for Tribal/State Agreements and Direct Funding
•Direct Title IV-E Program
•Overview and Requirements for Accessing Title IV-E Funding
•Scope of the Title IV-E Program
•Resources to Assist Tribes

Press Release

National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges - October 31, 2017

Congress passed the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) in 1978 to address the widespread practice of state entities removing American Indian and Alaskan Native children from their homes and families. Congressional findings memorialized in ICWA included "an alarmingly high percentage of Indian families are broken up by the removal, often unwarranted, of their children from them by non-tribal public and private agencies and that a high percentage of such children are placed in non-Indian foster and adoptive homes and institutions." "In order to best serve the children and families of our community, we must develop and support collaboration between state and tribal court systems," said Hon. Richard Blake, Hoopa Valley Tribe, president, National American Indian Court Judges Association.

Benchbook: http://www.ncjfcj.org/sites/default/files/NCJFCJ_ICWA_Judicial_Benchbook_Final_Web.pdf




Friday, 09 June 2017 11:43

LA ICWA Quick Reference Guide

This guide was adapted from Utah Court Improvement Program & ABA Center on Children and the Law by Judge Anne Simon. Produced by Louisiana's Court Improvement Program in January 2017.

We are pleased to share a special ABA Child Law Practice issue focusing on Indian child welfare. The issue includes the article on implementing the new ICWA regulations, written by Scott Trowbridge and supported by Louisiana CIP/Pelican Center. Thank you for your contribution to the issue and dedicating your time and expertise to what will be a valuable and timely contribution for the field.

A PDF file of the collaborative article is attached here. Please feel free to send this issue to partners in the field and use it for educational activities you may be involved in, such as trainings and conferences. The full edition includes additional information on ICWA that may be of interest to practitioners.

If you are interested in this newsletter, you can subscribe to CLP. CLP provides child law professionals nationwide practice-based information to help them do their jobs.  Each issue features articles on current child law topics, experts’ insights, practical tips and how-to’s, and resources and tools to improve advocacy. CLP also highlights the latest state and federal case law and legislative developments affecting the rights of children and families.

CLP Online offers online access to articles archives, topical article collections, searchable state case law map, and multimedia. Information on subscribing can be found at CLP’s website.

American Indian children are place in foster care at higher rates and therefore represent larger number of children receiving services.  Special oversight should be provided by court system when American Indian children are placed in foster care.  Funding should be distributed based upon number of children served, train all professionals about compliance with ICWA and consistent use of measurement tools for compliance.