Considering that ICWA is at stake on the U.S. Supreme Court level, it is important for child placement professionals, and prospective adoptive parents to really understand how impactful anti-Indian structures are on American Indian transracial adoptees.
I have the honor of being asked to speak for the Utah’s Annual ICWA Conference. I will be giving a virtual presentation. American Indian children who have been removed from their home and are being considered for placement in foster care or adoption require stability. The removal itself is traumatizing, with effects that last late […]
I will be giving a presentation of Bitterroot: A Salish Memoir of Transracial Adoption and talking about the writing of it, and why it was an important book to be out in the public space. Please join me at the LaVeta Library at 1:oo p.m. for a reading, conversation and questions.
Like last year, autumn will be slow in coming. It will be awhile before we can leave behind the 90+ degree days that we’ve experienced too many times this summer, and last. I look forward to autumn. There is a change in the air that other seasons don’t convey; autumn encompasses all the senses. It […]
We never know where our paths will take us. We just know we are going on a direction, many times, we are being led. For me, it is deeper into the forest. Now, that forest isn’t scary, but it is relatively unexplored. That forest is American Indian child placement. I was in my 40s when […]
I stared at the posts of two of my white friends on Facebook, and my heart dropped. Each post contained what seemed to include supportive at best, innocuous at worst illustrative photos, each began with the right words of racial awareness, both, about midway through, switched so delicately to mirror the structure of white supremacy. […]
When I first saw the name on the email, the name looked familiar, but I couldn’t place it. Phillip Barcio. It turns out that he wrote a fabulous review of Bitterroot: A Salish Memoir of Transracial Adoption for the Western Humanities Review! That’s why it sounded so familiar! The email was at the same time […]
Is American Indian a ‘racial’ or ‘political’ identity? It’s complicated. I’d just posted on FB how the conservative right (the Goldwater Institute) is attempting to upend the Indian Child Welfare Act of 1978 (ICWA) through its state-by-state litigation. There are two legal arguments, both funded by right-wing think-tanks, whose money can be traced to the […]
During the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s, American Indian children were placed with white families at a phenomenal rate. By 1974, approximately 30% American Indian children were removed from their American Indian families and placed with non-Indian families. Neglect was cited most often, a vague term that was responsible for changing the lives of Indian children, […]
This episode of In Other Words was originally aired on June 7, 2014. Interviewer Ann Szalda-Petree probed the issues that were brought to light in my study of American Indian transracial adoption. This type of child placement was an informal policy during the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s, and the outcomes for adoptees were, many times, […]