Online Program

Shaping the Future for Indian Children: Child Welfare Law and Policy

Monday, November 2, 2015 : 9:30 a.m. - 9:50 a.m.

Joaquin Gallegos, Casey Family Programs, Washington, DC
Lack of Indian Child Welfare in Tribal Nation communities persists as one of the central barriers for Indigenous children to lead full and happy lives. Despite passage of the Indian Child Welfare Act in 1978, protective and adoptive placement of American Indian Alaska Native children outside of Native homes remains high even when family and tribal homes are both able and available. Recent White House and US Department of Justice actions and US Supreme Court rulings have spurred renewed interest in Indian Child Welfare. Addressing consequences from Indian child removal, especially poor mental and emotional health, is required and can lead to increased wellbeing of Tribal Nations and their children. Reactivation of public health efforts focused on Indian Child Welfare can further develop safe and healthy environments for Indian children and families. This presentation describes emerging policy change, analyzes recommended policy solutions, and engages participants to enhance the lives of Indigenous children.

Learning Areas:

Diversity and culture
Public health or related public policy

Learning Objectives:
Describe current federal endeavors promoting Indian Child Welfare change. Identify interactions between child welfare and public health/health care/ and health research. Discuss challenges that prohibit full Indian child well-being including lack of data, low workforce capacity, and intermittent and incomplete health care services. Evaluate recommendations for rejuvenated investment and new resources for enhancing well-being of Indian children and families.

Keyword(s): Native Americans, Well-Being

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am a young American Indian leader who advocates for tribally-driven health care solutions. I recently served as a policy fellow at the Center for Native American Youth-The Aspen Institute in Washington, DC developing health and child welfare policy. I continue engagement with the Centers for American Indian and Alaska Native Health – CU Anschutz, Fourth World Center for the Study of Indigenous Law and Politics – CU Denver and the National Institutes of Health.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.