Resources

Read important documents and other information about ICWA and the attacks against the law.

5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals Decision Upholding ICWA

August 9, 2019

In a decision issued on August 9, 2019, in Brackeen v. Bernhardt, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit ruled that ICWA is constitutional, upholding the law and recognizing its importance in protecting children and families.

Brief from Protect Indian Kids’ member tribes in Brackeen v. Bernhardt

February 19, 2019

In reply briefs filed with the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit in the case Brackeen v. Bernhardt, tribal nations reaffirm the constitutionality of the Indian Child Welfare Act and underscore why ICWA’s protections continue to be vital for Native children and families.

Reply brief from from federal defendants in Brackeen v. Bernhardt

February 19, 2019

In reply briefs filed with the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit in the case Brackeen v. Bernhardt, U.S federal government agencies argue that overturning ICWA would be “contrary to binding Supreme Court precedent” and would “upend centuries of settled law.”

Guidelines for Implementing the Indian Child Welfare Act

December 2016

In 2016, the Bureau of Indian Affairs published updated guidance for implementing the Indian Child Welfare Act, improving how the law is implemented and benefits children.

Congressional study on pre-ICWA removal of Native American children from families

July 23, 1978

Prior to the passage of ICWA, research found that Native American children were disproportionately separated from their parents and families. Studies showed that 25 to 35 percent of all Native American children were being removed, with 85 percent of that group placed outside of their families and communities.

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