fbpx
 
Sen. Kryston Sinema

WASHINGTON — Arizona Senator Kyrsten Sinema and a bipartisan group of lawmakers from both the House and Senate have filed an amicus brief in federal court, urging the court to protect the Indian Child Welfare Act. 

The bipartisan and bicameral brief was filed with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit in New Orleans as the court re-opens its August ruling, which affirmed the Indian Child Welfare Act’s constitutionality in Brackeen v. Bernhardt. The decision the Fifth Circuit issued in August reversed a ruling from the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas which wrongly struck down the Indian Child Welfare Act as unconstitutional, according to a news release from Sinema’s office. 

“Native American children in Arizona and across the country deserve to be able to grow up with the support of their communities,” Sinema said. “Protecting the Indian Child Welfare Act ensures tribal families can stay together.” 

The amicus brief urges the Fifth Circuit to uphold the court’s previous decision affirming the constitutionality of the law.

Congress passed the Indian Child Welfare Act in 1978, after receiving testimony that 25 to 35 percent of American Indian and Alaska Native children were removed from their homes by state and private adoption agencies. The law sets best-practice standards for child welfare and adoption proceedings involving children who are members of a federally recognized tribe or are eligible for membership in a federally recognized tribe.

More Stories Like This

San Manuel Band of Mission Indians Surprises Native Nonprofits with $1M in Donations on #GivingTuesday
Biden Affirms Commitment to Tribal Nations, Announces New Initiatives at White House Tribal Nations Summit
PHOTOS: The White House Tribal Nations Summit
WATCH: The White House Tribal Nations Summit 
Tribal Leaders to Attend First In-person White House Tribal Nations Summit in Six Years

You’re reading the first draft of history. 

November is  Native American Heritage Month in the United States. We feel like every month — and every day — is a reason for celebrating Native Americans and our heritage. That’s what we try to do here at Native News Online, with stories each day that celebrate, inform and uplift American Indian and Alaska Native people. Over the past year or so, we have been especially busy with three important reporting projects that are having an impact across Indian Country:

  • Indian Boarding Schools. We’ve reported and published more than 150 stories and special live stream video events to help shine a light on the dark era of boarding schools — and help create momentum for change.
  • Native Health Desk. Launched in January, this reporting initiative was created to heighten awareness of Native American health inequities and spotlight pockets of progress in Indian Country. So far we’ve reported and published nearly 120 stories and launched a monthly health newsletter that reaches more than 23,000 readers.  
  • Native Bidaske. In March, we launched this live stream interview program to highlight the work of Native Americans who are making news and leading change in Indian Country.  We have hosted guests from the federal government and Native rights advocates as well as Indigenous actors, comedians, journalists and models.   

We hope you will join us in celebrating Native American heritage and history this November and invite you to consider the old adage that “Journalism is the first draft of history.” If you appreciate the voice Native News Online gives to Native American people, we hope you will support our work with a donation so we can build our newsroom and continue to amplify Native voices and Native perspectives.

Any contribution — big or small — helps us remain a force for change in Indian Country and continue telling the stories that are so often ignored, erased or overlooked.  Most often, our donors make a one-time gift of $20 or more, while many choose to make a recurring monthly donation of $5 or $10.  Whatever you can do, it helps fund our Indigenous-led newsroom and our ability to cover Native news. 

Donate to Native News Online today and support independent Indigenous journalism. Thank you. 

About The Author
Native News Online Staff
Author: Native News Online StaffEmail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Native News Online is one of the most-read publications covering Indian Country and the news that matters to American Indians, Alaska Natives and other Indigenous people. Reach out to us at [email protected]