The Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) protects Native American children who are members of or are eligible to be members of a federally recognized tribe. Specific rules apply to them in non-divorce custody cases such as termination of parental rights, foster care, and adoption (especially Minnesota adoption).
Are there Differences in Raising Native American Children?
ICWA requires that Native American children be placed with family first, or with someone from their tribe. If none of the above is available, then the State must find a Native American family that is licensed with a government agency. After these options have been exhausted, then adoption can be to another qualified family. In private adoptions, birth parents have significant latitude in selecting adoptive families.
Essentially, the law is concerned with exposing native children to their native heritage, but they are not prohibited from being exposed to other cultures. Aside from this difference, raising Native American children involves the kind of attention, love, and persistence that any other child would require. They are in need of stability and care.
How to Incorporate a Native American Child Seamlessly into Your Family
Although there are several books on the topic, it is important to reach out to the tribe for guidance. You may also want to check into Urban Indian Community Centers. The most important advice is to talk with your child to understand his or her specific needs.
Fiddler Osband, LLC is Specialized and Can Help People Looking into Adopting Native children. Mark Fiddler, owner of Fiddler Osband, LLC, is an ICWA lawyer who is recognized in his field for his contributions to the Native American community and his experience before tribal, state, and federal courts. His qualifications are listed extensively on his Profile page.
Adoption Agencies in Minnesota
The law office works with and recommends several secular and Christian adoption agencies in Minnesota, especially the ones listed below(in no order of preference):
Bethany Christian Services
Children’s Home Society-Lutheran Social Services of Minnesota
New Horizons Adoption Agency
Summit Adoption Home Studies