2014. Port Gamble S'Klallam Tribal Child Welfare Program | Port Gamble S'Klallam Tribe. Publisher's Version
Abstract:Children are the future of any nation. In the US, a misguided and shameful history of removing Native children from their homes destroyed families and communities. Although the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) of 1978 affirmed tribal nations’ role in child protection, assimilationist policies have an ongoing influence, and Native children taken into the homes of non-Native families typically grow up with no connection to their extended families and lose their cultural identity. The Port Gamble S’Klallam Tribe (PGST) resolved to create its own Child Welfare Program and recently took complete control over federal funds for child welfare, a first among tribes in the US. PGST provides services that are culturally sensitive and integrated with tribal programs to protect children and strengthen families.