Please share this post and become a MEMBER at http://lakotalaw.org/donate-new to effect permanent change for the Lakota children.

The Lakota People’s Law Project and the Lakota tribes of South Dakota have been working on achieving the permanent solution to the corruption of South Dakota’s Department of Social Services by rerouting federal money from the state and getting it directly to the tribes. For this to happen the Lakota tribes will have to overcome many hurdles and organize their own foster care and other family planning programs.

Although we have worked on this struggle for over 8 years, we are finally breaking through and creating the system that will prevent Lakota children from being kidnapped by the state of South Dakota and taken from their communities. 8 of the 9 Lakota tribes have applied for federal funding to assist them in planning for the installation of these programs and the Department of Justice, in conjunction with the ACLU, has just released an amicus brief supporting the Lakota children and condemning the practices of South Dakota. The full brief can be read here: https://turtletalk.files.wordpress.com/2014/08/122-1amicusbriefoftheunitedstates8-14-2014.pdf

Please help make this solution a reality by donating to help the Lakota children remain with their families!

Please keep Sharing and Become a MEMBER: http://lakotalaw.org/donate-new

Our team is pounding the pavement to create a foster care system in South Dakota that is run by Lakota, for Lakota. This solution is essential to tribal sovereignty and children’s rights. So many Lakota children have been displaced from their communities, abused, and abandoned because of the corrupt practices of the South Dakota Department of Social Services. It is so important for these children to stay with their communities and learn their language, culture, and traditions before the Lakota culture is demolished.

8 out of 9 tribes in South Dakota have submitted their Title IV Federal Planning Grant Applications to gain access to funds that will be essential in creating the infrastructure for Lakota-run Child and Family Service Programs.

With your support, we will win this battle and the children will be protected.

Please share this post and become a MEMBER at http://lakotalaw.org/donate-new to affect permanent change for the Lakota children!

There are too many inequities and inconsistencies within the state of South Dakota. The corrupt government has preyed upon innocent Lakota children for far too long. We are taking the steps to create a permanent solution for Lakota children. Stand with us on our journey!

Please reblog this and spread the message of inequality for Lakota children in the foster care system.

South Dakota’s Department of Social Services is transferring Lakota foster children to the Department of Corrections and Mental Health Facilities at a staggering rate. The 10-year period between 1999 and 2009 depicts a nearly five-fold increase for children being moved to “non-foster care institutions,” growing from 6.9% in 1999 to 32.8% in 2009.

Why is this happening to these children? Why are they being taken from their families, from their communities, and being institutionalized? This “institutionalization” is not solving issues that these children may have. Please appeal to South Dakota to end its racist tactics.

Congratulations to Port Gamble S’Klallam Tribe! They were the first Native tribe to receive Title IV-E status. They now have the right to manage their tribe’s adoption, foster care and guardianship programs!

Please sign our petition asking Obama to extend the same privileges to the Lakota tribes of South Dakota: lakotalaw.org/action . We need 5,000 more signatures this week to continue putting pressure on Washington DC.

“Managing our own Child Welfare Program allows us to be proactively involved in making sure our families get the help they need and children are not removed from their culture and community. Whenever possible, the goal is to preserve family relationships even if a child doesn’t live with his or her parents.” - Port Gamble S’Klallam Tribe Chairman Jeromy Sullivan.

The Port Gamble S’Klallam Tribe also became the first Tribe to qualify for an IV-E waiver. This “allows the program to be more flexible with the definition of ‘family’ and more easily allocate funds toward intervention activities.”

Read the article here: http://www.kingstoncommunitynews.com/news/288622501.html

When Daryle was 12 years old, he was taken from his family and put into non-Native foster care. He was put on psychotropic medication because he was “scared and emotional.” As if it is any question as to why Daryle might be scared.

ICWA expressly instructed each state to undertake all reasonable efforts to reunite Native children with their family, unless that state actively proved, to an independent judicial magistrate, that there was a good cause to refrain from doing so. If children cannot be reunited, ICWA also mandates that they be placed first, with family members, and if that is not available, within Native foster homes. Only when neither of these options is available, is the state allowed to place Native American children in non-Native foster care.

“I was slowly disconnected from my Lakota culture and everything that I was ever taught as a young boy,” he says. “I aged out [of the system] into a world of uncertainty. I didn’t have what I truly needed for my well-being: a connection to my tribe and culture.”

We must put a stop to this unlawful practice because the Lakota children need to be raised with the values of their culture. If Native children continue to be removed from their families and communities at such a staggering rate, it will be a death sentence for their culture and values.

Read the entire article here: http://content.healthaffairs.org/content/33/12/2256.full

Sign the petition to bring Native children home:  www.lakotalaw.org/action 

Outside the U.S. but still want to sign? Go to: http://petitions.moveon.org/sign/free-the-lakota-children-1

Keep Sharing and Become a Member at: http://lakota.cc/1kvf8ka to help reconstruct the foster care system in South Dakota so that Lakota children stay with their community.

Watch Chase Iron Eyes’ video asking all of us to step in and take part in creating this change and stopping the cultural genocide of the Lakota people https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eYIOWySWP2M

Become a member of the Lakota People’s Law Project at: http://lakotalaw.org/donate-new and get stickers (like the one in the picture), t-shirts (The Black Hills Are Not For Sale), and books (Daniel Sheehan’s, The People’s Advocate) depending on your membership level–which starts at only $2 a month! All proceeds go toward assisting the Lakota tribes create their own Child and Family Services Programs.

Not unlike the rest of the country, the Lakota people are hit hard by the taking of their children, often without just cause. Because of the poverty level that exists on the reservations in South Dakota, the Lakota people bear the biggest burden in having their children removed from their families and their communities.

The only way to create a permanent solution to this “kidnapping” of Lakota children from their families and their culture is to redirect federal funding for child and family planning services (foster care being one of those programs) directly to the Lakota tribes so that they can be responsible for their culture’s next generation.

Please help us make this a reality by becoming a Member! http://lakotalaw.org/donate-new

Shoni Shimmel, the Native American basketball star of the WNBA team the Atlanta Dream, is pictured wearing “The Black Hills are Not For Sale” t-shirt in a recent interview with ESPNW. We have these shirts available for sale at: https://romero-institute.squarespace.com/  Proceeds will assist in helping the Lakota people of South Dakota fund their own foster care program.

For the ESPNW story go to: http://espn.go.com/womens-college-basketball/preview2013/story/_/id/9939534/espnw-5-faces-louisville-senior-guard-shoni-schimmel .

Sign the petition: lakotalaw.org/action

We are now in the final hour! The children of five tribes of South Dakota hang in the balance of your support through this petition. If you have not signed yet, please go to lakotalaw.org/action! If you have already signed, please encourage your network to support this effort by signing the petition and demanding that the federal government take action to bring Lakota children from South Dakota back to their communities.

In the coming weeks, the federal government (HHS, DOJ, and DOI) is deciding whether or not to fund the five remaining tribes in South Dakota so that they may begin planning for their own Child and Family Service Programs.

The petition signatures have a profound affect on their decision! Please help us bring the Lakota children home!

If you have not seen the recent news coverage about the advancements that have been made in regards to Lakota foster care, please keep reading! Also, if you’d like to donate and become a member to support foster care run by Lakota, for Lakota, please go to: http://lakotalaw.org/donate-new

NPR has aired the news of the Department of Justice supporting the ACLU in their class action lawsuit and the submission of the Title IV-E Planning Grant Applications on All Things Considered this past Friday, August 30th. To listen to the full story, go to: http://lakota.cc/1vNYnXz

The Argus Leader of South Dakota also recently published a story by Chase Iron Eyes about the ongoing Mette affair and has given perspective to the situation in light of upcoming elections in South Dakota. To read the story in its entirety, please see: http://lakota.cc/1qcfsr2

Thank you to all of our generous members for their ongoing support in this dire situation!

Take part in this historic event for the Lakota people to gain tribal sovereignty by becoming a MEMBER: http://lakotalaw.org/donate-new

Eight out of Nine tribes have submitted their Title IV Federal Planning Grant Applications which includes the Rosebud tribe that has already received this planning grant. If these grants are approved for the rest of the tribes, they will be instrumental in funding the tribes’ Child and Family Planning Program infrastructure. With this funding, the tribes will be able to hire experts, educate and train Lakota employees, purchase computer programs and equipment, and fund other necessities that are involved in this undertaking.

Without the support of our members and other generous donors, we would not have reached this major milestone and we would like to thank all of those who have supported us in our efforts. Please continue to show your support at this critical juncture so that the Lakota people can create a foster care system run by Lakota, for Lakota.

Largely due to the Standing Rock Reservation and the Lakota People’s Law Project’s invitation to the Historic Foster Care Summit in May of 2013 where the Port Gamble S'Klallam tribe was invited to give a presentation, they have since created their own Child and Family Services Programs, including their own foster care program.

We are overjoyed that Sylvia Burwell, the new secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services, has just visited Port Gamble, taking notice of the success of their programs and seeing the solution to years of culture genocide. We are confident that the Lakota tribes of South Dakota will follow suit.

Thank you all for supporting us in our vision of foster care run by Lakota, for Lakota. Please keep sharing this story and become a member at: http://lakotalaw.org/donate-new

The news article recording this historic event can be found at: http://www.northkitsapherald.com/news/271865131.html