A recent ProPublica investigation showed how ICWA was being unevenly applied in some states, breaking up Native American families that should have received additional protections under the law. There’s still room for improvement, advocates say. Read the full article at ProPublica.
“In adopting the Indian Child Welfare Act, Congress exercised that lawful authority to secure the right of Indian parents to raise their families as they please; the right of Indian children to grow in their culture; and the right of Indian communities to resist fading into the twilight of history. All of that is in … Read more
“This case is about children who are among the most vulnerable: those in the child welfare system,” wrote Justice Amy Coney Barrett in the majority opinion. “The bottom line is that we reject all of petitioners’ challenges to the statute, some on the merits and others for lack of standing.” Read the full article at … Read more
By a 7-to-2 vote, the court upheld the law’s preferences for Native tribes when Indian children are adopted, ruling that the law does not discriminate on the basis of race and does not impermissibly impose a federal mandate on traditionally state-regulated areas of power. Read the full article at NPR.
The Supreme Court on Thursday upheld a 1978 law aimed at keeping Native American adoptees with their tribes and traditions, handing a victory to tribes that had argued that a blow to the law would upend the basic principles that have allowed them to govern themselves. Read the full article at the New York Times.
Beyond the tangle of legal matters, the Supreme Court case delves into the evocative terrain of historical trauma, race, identity, cultural biases — and the very meaning of family. Read the full article at Searchlight New Mexico.
The Supreme Court is about to decide on a case arguing that the Indian Child Welfare Act, or ICWA, discriminates against white people. The lawsuit seeks to reframe tribal membership as a racial rather than a political category, and argues that it disadvantages white foster parents trying to adopt Native children. This week, Rebecca Nagle, host of the This Land … Read more
The Indian Child Welfare Act of 1978 sought to keep Native children in tribal communities. The Supreme Court may change that this spring. Read the full article at the New York Times.
Congresswoman Mary Peltola, D-Alaska, and other House Democrats say they’re worried the U.S. Supreme Court is about to weaken the Indian Child Welfare Act, to the detriment of Native children and their tribes. Read the full article at Alaska Public Media.
“If the court rules the law unconstitutional, it will not only prevent family reunifications like my own — it will tell tribes that we do not have a right to our own children, and that our political sovereignty, which Congress has recognized for centuries is no more. For all of us, this should be a … Read more
Let me be clear, this law is not about preventing non-Native families from adopting children when the situation and best interests of the child call for it. It’s about keeping families together whenever possible; it’s about fighting for the futures of Native American children; and it’s about giving tribes a long-awaited seat at the table. … Read more
Janine Jackson interviewed Crushing Colonialism’s Jen Deerinwater about efforts to overturn the Indian Child Welfare Act for the December 9, 2022, episode of CounterSpin. Read the transcript or listen to the interview at FAIR.org.
The Supreme Court will decide a case that affects Native children and their adoptive families. Although both sides claim to have children’s best interest at heart, removing kids from Native communities has a troubled history in America. Read the full article at Harper’s Bazaar.
Indigenous affairs reporter Miles Brady talked with Koston Lathoris, a Las Vegas lawyer and citizen of the Southern Paiute tribe, about the case. Listen to the full story at Nevada Public Radio.
Each side presented their oral arguments Wednesday to the U.S. Supreme Court for the most serious challenge to the Indian Child Welfare Act in recent memory. The decision in Haaland v. Brackeen will be a major force in the future of ICWA and the scope of tribal sovereignty. Today on Native America Calling, Shawn Spruce … Read more
The Supreme Court appeared likely Wednesday to leave in place most of a federal law that gives preference to Native American families in foster care and adoption proceedings of Native children. Read the full article at Indian Country Today.
And because Native children represent about 55% of all children in state custody, Chen says overturning ICWA would have huge implications for Alaska. At the same time, Native people only make up a little over 20% of the population, so there’s a disparity, she says, and a feeling that the state hasn’t done enough to … Read more
The law, known as ICWA, includes many other provisions that impact Native families across Indian Country. What ICWA will look like following the Supreme Court’s decision depends on how the justices rule. Amicus curiae briefs filed in the case cover arguments made for and against the law. Read the full article at Native News Online.
The U.S. Supreme Court’s conservative majority seemed conflicted Wednesday, as the justices heard arguments challenging the Indian Child Welfare Act, known by the acronym “ICWA.” Listen to the full story at NPR.
The Court is hearing a case that challenges the legality of the Indian Child Welfare Act, which prioritizes the placement of Native American children in foster care or adoption with relatives, other tribal members, or in other Native homes. Read the full article at Time.
Brackeen v. Haaland attacks a 44-year-old law enacted to halt cultural genocide. Read the full article at Vox.
The Indian Child Welfare Act was passed to redress years of mass separations of Native families. This month, the court hears a case that could overturn it Read the full article at The Guardian.
Every Native child deserves the deep sense of safety that comes with being cared for in a home that shares their culture. Read the full article at romper.
In the sprawling federal lawsuit Haaland v. Brackeen, a handful of white foster parents, among other plaintiffs, are asking the Supreme Court to overturn a law called the Indian Child Welfare Act. ICWA was created in 1978 to prevent family separation in Native communities. When the law passed, about a third of Native children had been removed from … Read more
The Indian Child Welfare Act set out to fix generations of harm to Native kids. The Supreme Court could soon toss it aside. Read the full article at the Mother Jones website.
There’s a central question at the core of every child welfare case: What is the best interest of the child? When it comes to Native adoptions, the fate of the law that set the standard for four decades now rests with the Supreme Court. Read the full article at the Christian Science Monitor website.
The U.S. Supreme Court hears arguments Wednesday in a case that pits several prospective adoptive parents and the state of Texas against the Indian Child Welfare Act — a federal law aimed at preventing Native American children from being separated from their extended families and their tribes. Listen to the full story at the NPR … Read more
On Wednesday, the Supreme Court will hear arguments in Brackeen v. Haaland, a case engineered to hobble the federal government’s power to protect Native communities from exploitation. The plaintiffs are asking the justices to invalidate the 44-year-old Indian Child Welfare Act, which prioritizes the placement of Native children in custody proceedings with Native families. But they’re … Read more
The issue is whether a federal law that seeks to place Native American foster children in Native American homes is constitutional. The case could turn on whether the justices see tribes as racial groups or sovereign nations. Read the full article at the New York Time website.
The case has enormous implications for Indian Country, its children and the ongoing existence of tribal sovereignty, said Sarah Deer, professor at the University of Kansas and chief justice for the Prairie Island Indian Community. Read the full article at the Indian Country Today website.
The Imprint walks readers through highlights of the Brackeen v. Haaland case Read the full article at The Imprint.
California’s Morongo Band of Mission Indians is one of five tribes that have intervened in the Brackeen v. Haaland case, scheduled for oral arguments Nov. 9. The tribesspoke out this week alongside leaders of the Oneida Nation of Wisconsin, the Quinault Indian Nation of Washington, the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma and the Navajo Nation. Read the … Read more
Kendra Lowden, a Citizen Potawatomi Nation member, discussed the case as well as the Indian Child Welfare Act and the impact its repeal could have on tribes and children across the country. Listen to the full podcase at Potawatomi.org.
“We will not go back to a time when our children were stolen from our communities without cause.” Read the full article at The Imprint.
Matthew Fletcher, Harry Burns Hutchins Collegiate Professor of Law, University of Michigan, and Rebecca Nagle, Creator and Host, “This Land” Podcast, discuss the case before the Supreme Court. Listen at the Ideastream Public Media website.
Kendra Lowden is a Citizen Potawatomi Nation member and Curly family descendant. She works as the Senior Program Associate at the University of Denver’s Graduate School of Social Work. She is the owner of Ghost Thunder Child Welfare Consulting and previously served as the Board President of the Oklahoma Indian Child Welfare Association. Kendra discussed … Read more
Brackeen v. Haaland is a case centering around the Indian Child Welfare Act of 1978 (ICWA), which focuses on assimilation, tribal culture and the adoption of Native children. Across the country, tribes are watching this case unfold to see how it will impact tribal sovereignty and the relationship between tribes and the federal government. Read the … Read more
On Nov. 9, the eyes of Indian Country will once again turn toward the nation’s capital, where the Supreme Court will hear a challenge to the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA), a law passed in 1978 that enshrines tribal governments’ right to oversee foster care placements in cases involving Native children. Read the full article at … Read more
Read the full article at the Navajo-Hopi Observer website.
Today, five tribes filed a brief with the U.S. Supreme Court in Brackeen v. Haaland defending the constitutionality of the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA). Read the full article at Indian Country Today.
Read the full article in The Desert Sun.
For the last 44 years, a federal law called the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) has sought to prevent these situations by prioritizing that Native children adoptees be placed, when possible, with Native relatives or other members within the child’s tribe. But after months of consequential rulings by the U.S. Supreme Court’s right-wing majority, four … Read more
The case centers on the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA), which was designed to protect American Indian communities against state-led efforts to break up Native families. The challengers in the case—several Republican-led states and non-Native families seeking to adopt Native children—are attempting to invalidate ICWA’s restrictions on breaking up Native families and on non-Native families … Read more
The amicus brief urges the Fifth Circuit to uphold the court’s previous decision affirming the constitutionality of IWCA. The decision the Fifth Circuit issued in August reversed an unprecedented ruling from the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas which wrongly struck down ICWA as unconstitutional. Read the full press release and view … Read more
Get ready for round two. Oral arguments in a closely-watched Indian Child Welfare Act case will take place on January 22, 2020. After offering a tentative date last month, 5th Circuit Court of Appeals made it official on Wednesday. The case known as Brackeen v. Bernhardt will go before an en banc panel of judges … Read more
The legal status of the Indian Child Welfare Act is again going before the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. In 2018, a Texas federal court found the Act known as ICWA to be unconstitutional. But this summer a panel of three Fifth Circuit judges reversed that finding. Now the full panel of appellate judges will … Read more
Attacks on the law, enacted in 1978, have inexplicably risen in the past seven years and attracted the support of a seemingly disparate array of high power ultra conservative players and organizations. Today’s challenges to the child welfare protocols aren’t only about adoption because if the Indian Child Welfare Act is found to be unconstitutional … Read more
Native American tribes got a big win in August when a federal court upheld the Indian Child Welfare Act, a pivotal 1978 law that requires states to prioritize placing Native children in foster or adoptive homes with Native families over non-Native families. But the decision by a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals … Read more
In the 40 years since Congress enacted the Indian Child Welfare Act, the law has been criticized in legal challenges that have climbed all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court. But the ICWA, as the act is known, has always prevailed. Now its constitutionality is being questioned again. On Thursday, the U.S. Court of … Read more
After initially deciding the closely-watched case in favor of Indian Country, the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals announced that it will hear the dispute all over again. A larger set of judges will now scrutinize the landmark law but tribal nations remain confident that their sovereign rights and their most precious resource — their children — will win … Read more
Today, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit issued an order directing a challenge to the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) to be reheard en banc — before the entire Fifth Circuit. As previously reported, a three-judge panel of the Fifth Circuit had held ICWA Constitutional in August, finding it was not a race-based statute that would violate the … Read more
More than 40 years after the federal law took effect, the child welfare system continues to absorb a disproportionate number of Native American children nationally and in Utah, noted Alisa Lee, Indian child welfare program administrator for the Utah Division of Child and Family Services. Data provided by Lee’s office shows that roughly 5% of … Read more
In ‘Brackeen v. Bernhardt’, decided on Aug. 9, 2019, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit held that the Indian Child Welfare Act was constitutional. We applaud the Fifth Circuit for upholding this federal law that is vital to safeguarding the welfare of Indian children. Read the full article at the New York … Read more
In the 21st century, we are still fighting to protect indigenous children whether it is north or south of the Mexican border. The 5th Circuit Court of Appeals decision to uphold the Indian Child Welfare Act was a critical step to keep our families, communities and identities intact. Now, some legal protections need to be … Read more
United States: Fifth Circuit Upholds Indian Child Welfare Act As Constitutional. Akin Gump (Aug. 14, 2019) Federal District Court of Appeals Upholds Indian Child Welfare Act. Nonprofit Quarterly (Aug. 13, 2019) EDITORIAL: ICWA ruling a victory for tribes. Tahlequah Daily Press. (Aug. 13, 2019) Fifth Circuit Court reaffirms Indian Child Welfare is constitutional. The Ada … Read more
Now the [Indian Child Welfare Act] is facing its most serious challenge yet. In a case that has implications far beyond the adoptions of American Indian children, three non-Native families and three Republican state attorneys general have sued the federal government saying that the ICWA relies on racial classifications that violate the equal protection clause … Read more
A LAW KEY to preventing state welfare agencies from separating Indigenous children from their families is at risk of being overturned thanks to the yearslong effort of a network of libertarian and right-wing organizations. In the 1970s, between a quarter and a third of Indigenous children across the United States had been removed from their … Read more
Zachary, or A.L.M. as he is called in legal papers, has a Navajo birth mother, a Cherokee birth father and adoptive parents, Jennifer and Chad Brackeen, neither of whom is Native American. The Brackeens are challenging a federal law governing Native American children in state foster care: It requires that priority to adopt them be given to Native families, to … Read more
So far, 325 tribes and states, including Montana, Idaho, Utah and Colorado, have joined forces to preserve a law that gives Native families preference in adoption of Native children. Read the full article at the Wyoming Public Media website.
1978 law giving preference to Native American families in foster care and adoption proceedings involving American Indian children is an unconstitutional race-based intrusion on state powers that has caused families to be “literally torn apart,” an attorney told a federal appeals court March 13.But supporters of the decades-old law say it’s needed to protect and … Read more
A case before a federal appeals court could upend an historic adoption law meant to combat centuries of brutal discrimination against American Indians and keep their children with families and tribal communities.For the first time, a few states have sued to overturn the federal Indian Child Welfare Act, which Congress enacted in 1978 as an antidote to … Read more
Non-Indians think they know better than Indians what is best for Native American children, said lawyers for the Navajo Nation in arguments before a federal appeals court.It’s a bold argument, but goes to the heart of the case in Brackeen v. Bernhardt. Under the Indian Child Welfare Act, Indian tribes have priority over non-Indians in Native … Read more
A case before a federal appeals court this week could upend an historic adoption law meant to combat centuries of brutal discrimination against American Indians and keep their children with families and tribal communities.For the first time, a few states have sued to overturn the federal Indian Child Welfare Act, which Congress enacted in 1978 … Read more
The Indian Child Welfare Act is under attack and tribes are pushing back after conservative and Christian groups joined a closely-watched battle over the landmark federal law. Read the full article at the Indianz.com website.
The Indian Child Welfare Act requires that Native American children be placed in Native American foster or adoptive homes, where possible, to maintain their heritage and identity.The law is being challenged with increasing regularity in courts and by special-interest groups who contend it prioritizes race over a child’s best interest.In October, U.S. District Judge Reed … Read more
A federal appeals court granted a stay requested by the four tribes on Monday to preserve the 1978 Indian Child Welfare Act. “The law is going to stay the same for now,” said Dan Lewerenz, one of the attorneys working on the Brackeen v. Zinke case. That means Native American families will stay together under the law. Read … Read more
The United States will join four tribes defending the Indian Child Welfare Act against a district court ruling in Texas. The Department of Justice, with the Department of Interior and Health and Human Services, and their officials, filed a notice of appeal on Nov. 30 to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, … Read more
Treppa: Why the ICWA is critical to the health of native children and tribal communities SHERRY TREPPA POSTED ON WEDNESDAY, 24 OCTOBER 2018 A Texas judge’s recent decision to strike down the Indian Child Welfare Act, or ICWA, sets a dangerous precedent that unravels federal policy carefully designed to correct centuries of tragic injustices committed … Read more