Colorado Court of Appeals Case re. Membership v. Enrollment [ICWA]

I get this question a lot and have had many discussions about it recently, so I know there are some specific attorneys out there who will be interested in this case:

“As a matter of first impression in Colorado, a division of the court of appeals holds that a child’s membership in a tribe, even absent eligibility for enrollment, is sufficient for a child to be an Indian child under the Indian Child Welfare Act.”

Little River Tribal Court Judge Issues Gag Order on Tribal Enrollment

From Indianz:

“A tribal court in Michigan has issued an injunction ordering a journalist not to report on issues related to “blood quantum” and qualifications for tribal enrollment.

Judge Melissa Pope of the Little River Band of Ottawa Indians Tribal Court entered the injunction last month, after another judge issued a temporary restraining order in August 2008. According to Pope’s February 19 order, “Defendants and Plaintiffs shall not discuss any parties’ enrollment in the Little River Band of Ottawa Indians with respect to enrollment fraud, meaning questioning whether any of the parties are properly enrolled; status as a descendant; or blood quantum.” Judge Pope issued the injunction in connection with a libel case against reporter Nancy Kelsey and three other defendants. Among other allegations in their complaint, the plaintiffs claim that Kelsey “sent numerous e-mails claiming that Plaintiffs and their families have engaged in enrollment fraud and are not rightful members of this Tribe.” ”

Get the Story:
Tribal court bans reporter from covering fraud claims (Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press 3/2)