Tribal Courts and Child Welfare Podcast Series from ACF


Tribal Courts and Child Welfare Series

CSKT 2018 Indian Child Welfare Legal Summit, September 12-13

Confederated Salish & Kootenai Tribes’2018 Indian Child Welfare Legal Summit

The Montana Court Improvement Program, in conjuction with CSKT, would like to invite you to this interactive training designed to improve legal knowledge, skills, and practices in relation to Indian Child Welfare. 

After opening with a case law update describing recent Montana opinions, federal court litigation, and note-worthy opinions from sister states, this CLE will provide a quick interactive refresher on the basics of tribal jurisdiction in child custody cases and the requirements of the Indian Child Welfare Act.

With this foundation in place, participants will explore topics like best practices in child welfare casesdomestic child sex traffickingtribal code enhancement, and ethics as it relates to Indian child welfare cases.  Participants will have the opportunity to break out into small affinity groups to discuss improving systems and practices across the state in order to better serve AI/AN children and families.

This two-day training is designed for tribal attorneys, tribal judges, parents’ attorneys, GALs, adoption attorneys, and state prosecutors. (Although caseworkers, CASAs, and other child welfare practitioners are welcome to join us, the focus of this training is to improve legal knowledge, skills, and practices.)  Faculty includes local and national experts, practitioners, and scholars from across the country.  An application for CLE credits will be filed.

For agenda, updates and more visit:

Congress Approves Tribal Court Improvement Program

From the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges:

The President signed the Child and Family Services Improvement and Innovation Act on Friday with authorizes Court Improvement Program (CIP) funding and includes Tribal Court Improvement funding! The Court Improvement funding is to support states and tribes in actions to:

“increase and improve engagement of the entire family in court processes relating to child welfare, family preservation, family reunification, and adoption.”.

Here’s the portion specifically related to tribes. (See pages 7-8 of the Act here)

”(3) ALLOCATION OF FUNDS.- ”(A) MANDATORY FUNDS.-Of the amounts reserved

under section 436(b)(2) for any fiscal year, the Secretary shall allocate-

”(iv) $1,000,000 for grants to be awarded on a

competitive basis among the highest courts of Indian tribes or tribal consortia that-H. R. 2883-8

”(I) are operating a program under part E, in accordance with section 479B;

”(II) are seeking to operate a program under part E and have received an implementation grant under section 476; or

”(III) has a court responsible for proceedings related to foster care or adoption.

We will send any updates as we hear further information about this exciting opportunity for tribal courts!