WALKER -- Cass County will seek signatures from the state of Minnesota and Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe to call for a congressional hearing in the county to consider whether the federal Indian Child Welfare Act has done what Congress designed it to do.
The county commissioners voted Tuesday to endorse this call for a hearing.
Their action followed a report last week on a study the University of Minnesota is conducting on how to address and diminish the large number of out-of-home placements for children here.
County officials have reported 90 percent of out-of-home placement children in November 2003 were American Indian.
Reasons cited for the need for a hearing include the condition of American Indian children in the county, the methods of assisting families and children to date and alternative approaches Congress might consider.
The resolution also states a meaningful change in the welfare of American Indian children in Cass County requires a consensus in the community and by the federal, tribal, state and county governments.
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