A senator from North Dakota is working to change the way that child welfare is viewed on reservations for Native American tribes. He invited the tribal chairman to come to Washington and address officials on the issue, and he also has recently issued some bills that pertain to the subject. He wishes simply to ensure that young people and children who have been taken from the care of their parents and placed in foster homes are as safe as they need to be.
The two pointed to recent incidents as evidence that this is not already being done. In one of the cases, a boy who was only three years old passed away. He was in the care of one of his relatives, but this was not a safe enough situation for him. As of right now, background checks do not have to be run to look at adults who would have children placed in their care. This new bill proposes that those background checks should be mandatory.
The problem that they addressed is that removing a child from a situation that is thought to be dangerous, perhaps after a divorce, is not the best course of action if that child is just placed into a new situation that is even more dangerous. All children deserve safe living situations while they grow and develop. This is not to say that removing them is improper, but that a better situation must be lined up first.
This could change the way that child custody works for foster parents and biological parents alike. Those who are facing divorce and may not get custody of their children — and those who have had their children taken from them — must know how these new laws are going to change their rights and what they can do to get custody of their children.
Source: , WDAZ, “Child welfare on Indian reservations was topic of the day in Washington” Adam Ladwig, Apr. 02, 2014