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Pennsylvania Indian Child Welfare Handbook

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The Pennsylvania Child Welfare Training Program. University of Pittsburgh, School ... Ask the parents if they or their child are members of a tribe or could be ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Pennsylvania Indian Child Welfare Handbook


1
Pennsylvania Indian Child Welfare Handbook
  • Developed By
  • The Pennsylvania Child Welfare Training Program
  • University of Pittsburgh, School of Social Work

2
What is the Indian Child Welfare Act?
  • Federal legislation
  • Went into effect in 1978
  • Recognizes the government-to-government
    relationship
  • Gives Tribal Courts authority to adjudicate child
    custody cases involving children of the tribe
  • Establishes minimum standards for
  • child custody cases involving Indian children

3
Congressional Declaration of United States Policy
  • Congress hereby declares that it is the policy
    of this Nation to protect the best interests of
    Indian children and to promote the stability and
    security of Indian tribes and families by the
    establishment of minimum federal standards for
    the removal of Indian children from their
    families and the placement of such children in
    foster or adoptive homes which will reflect the
    unique values of Indian culture, and by providing
    for assistance to Indian tribes in the operation
    of child and family service programs.

4
What is a child custody case?
  • As defined by ICWA are
  • Foster care placement
  • Termination of parental rights
  • Pre adoptive placement or
  • Adoptive placement.

5
Who is considered and Indian child?
  • Unmarried and
  • Under age 18
  • And
  • A member of an Indian tribe or
  • Is eligible for membership in an Indian tribe and
    is the biological child of a member of an Indian
    tribe.

6
How do I know if a child is a member or eligible?
  • Ask the parents if they or their child are
    members of a tribe or could be eligible for
    membership.
  • Each tribe determines membership.
  • Notify tribe that child may be eligible.

7
Jurisdiction
  • The childs tribe has the right to intervene at
    any point in child custody proceedings
  • Tribes have jurisdiction over child custody
    proceedings of children residing on reservation
  • Tribes may petition for transfer of the child
    custody proceeding

8
Parent and Tribe are Unknown?
  • Contact the Secretary of the Interior
  • Mailing Address Department of the Interior 1849
    C Street, N.W. Washington DC 20240
  • Phone 202-208-3100 E-Mail webteam_at_ios.doi.gov

9
Time Frames for Hearings
  • Placement or TPR hearings
  • at least ten days after receipt of notice
  • twenty additional days to prepare for such
    proceeding.

10
Placement
  • Active efforts
  • Clear and convincing evidence
  • Serious emotional or physical damage
  • Qualified expert witness testimony

11
Qualified Expert Witness
  • Tribal members
  • Lay experts
  • Professional persons

12
Foster care placement preferences
  • Extended family
  • Foster home approved tribe
  • Indian foster home
  • Institutional placement

13
Termination of parental rights
  • Beyond a reasonable doubt
  • Serious emotional or physical damage
  • Qualified expert witness testimony

14
Adoptive placement preference
  • Extended family
  • Childs tribe
  • Other tribes
  • Non-American Indian family.

15
Voluntary child custody proceedings
  • Withdrawn at any time
  • Voluntary consent to termination of parental
    rights
  • Consent for adoption
  • Consent to termination of parental rights or to
    adoption

16
ICWA Does Not Apply
  • A temporary placement arrangement, such as
    Voluntary Placement Agreement
  • Custody awarded to a parent as part of a divorce
    proceeding
  • Most delinquency proceedings
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