The Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) is a federal law that seeks to keep American Indian children with American Indian families. Congress passed ICWA in 1978 in response to the alarmingly high number of Indian children being removed from their homes by both public and private agencies. ICWA established standards for the placement of Indian children in foster and adoptive homes and enabled Tribes to be involved in state child welfare cases.
Honoring our culture and protecting our children, by providing affective and efficient administration of traditional values, tribal programs and community resources. Ensure our Absentee Shawnee children stay connected to their Kinship, Culture, and Community.
Indian Child Welfare was developed to provide temporary or permanent care for Absentee Shawnee children placed into tribal or state custody. Indian Child Welfare provides a variety of protective and supportive services to Absentee Shawnee children and their families.
Tribal ICW Casework
The ICW Caseworkers assist in providing or finding services to families whose children have been removed from their home due to abuse or neglect. ICW Caseworker and parents work together to develop a behaviorally based service treatment plan to correct the conditions which led to the removal of their child(ren). Services are designed to help children return to their homes.
State ICW Case Monitor
The ICW Case Monitor ensures state agency and state court systems compliance with the Indian Child Welfare Act, including the investigation of child abuse, active efforts to reunify families, culturally competent case management, and proper and timely court filing throughout Oklahoma and the United States.
Child Protection Services (CPS)
The Absentee Shawnee Tribe CPS investigates and records all referrals of alleged abuse and neglect of Absentee Shawnee children that live on trust land. CPS works with local and federal agencies to investigate the abuse or mistreatment of Absentee Shawnee children residing outside the Tribes jurisdiction. The primary responsibility of CPS is to assess the safety of the child and take the appropriate action to protect and promote the best interest of the child.
Promoting Safe and Stable Families (PSSF)
Formerly called Family Preservation and Support, PSSF promotes to enhance family strengths and offers intervention to protect children and provide services to help families with any difficulties causing the safety of their children to be at risk within the ICW service area.
Foster care is a program where families open their homes for a child to live until it is safe for the child to go home or other plans for permanency are made. Foster parents provide care for children who are removed from their homes for specific reasons such as abuse or neglect. Foster parents serve as temporary parents to a child or children placed in their home. Foster parents love and nurture the children and provide for their basic needs of food, shelter, clothing, and safety. Foster parents help the children maintain their social and cultural connections and customs.
The Absentee Shawnee Tribe Foster Care Licensing Committee shall administer and enforce all Tribal rules, regulations, procedures, and any agreements involving foster homes, fare care or foster placement agreements. The FCLC shall have to power to issue licenses for new foster homes within the jurisdiction of the Absentee Shawnee Tribe and reinstate, suspend and revoke current foster homes. Make and present recommendations to the Executive Committee regarding Foster Care By-laws, any agreements and any improvements needed to provide care for Absentee Shawnee children.
The Indian Child Welfare monitors and reserves the right to intervene in guardianship cases involving Native American children located in the Absentee Shawnee court jurisdiction.
To help Native parents develop and apply positive and satisfying attitudes, values, and skills that have roots in their culture heritage by promoting the growth and well-being of the Indian children through positive parenting.
Angel Tree Program
The Angel Tree program helps provide Christmas gifts to Absentee Shawnee children, ages 0-17 in AST foster care or in legal guardianship through the Absentee Shawnee tribal courts and elders ages 65 years and older.
Hope Chest (Clothes Closet)
The Hope Chest has been established to assist Absentee Shawnee children in foster care and families in need of gently used clothing, furniture, household items, toys, etc.