Upcoming Supreme Court ruling on Indigenous children’s adoptions sparks debate
January 13, 2023
CWN Editor's Note: Maka Black Elk, a Catholic member of the Oglala Sioux Tribe and executive director for truth and healing at the Jesuit Red Cloud Indian School, expressed concern that the Supreme Court might overturn the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) of 1978.
The law is intended to prevent Native American children from being separated from their tribes in foster care and adoption proceedings. Critics contend that the law is an unconstitutional racial preference.
“All of this is relevant to the Catholic faith in particular because of the Catholic Church’s history” [in operating residential schools],” said Black Elk. “The spirit of ICWA is about maintaining family, and that should be core to our Catholic faith.”
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