This pledge closed almost 2 years ago
Where to begin? We met with staff members from seven DC Senate offices on Feb. 4th, 2013. We had come to talk about the Indian Child Welfare Act and how it infringes on the right of children and parents.
But sitting next to this young woman, who comes from the same reservation as my husband... I realized there is so, so much more we all need to talk about.
She told how she was abused and used sexually as a child. She said she was first given to a man at the age of ten. Her sisters were also given to men. She told how she begged to be allowed to return to the only family she had ever felt safe with - the foster family that the tribe, through ICWA, had taken her from. She told how she tried to run away over a dozen times - to get back to the foster home where she knew she was loved. She told how the home where the tribal govt placed her made her destroy pictures of the family she loved, and how they had cut a rope to save her when she had tried to hang herself. It was only then that they finally allowed her to return to her true home.
Enough with the trepidation about messing with tribal sovereignty. I told our family's story in the book "Dying in Indian Country" - and apparently, I didn't even tell the half of it. My husband and I moved away from his reservation back in 1988 - and except for brief visits and funerals, hadn't spent a lot of time there since. It was a dangerous place to live then, and I knew that things had gotten worse to an extent - but I had no idea how really, really bad it was now. The prostitution of young girls has become common place. You want to talk about sex-trafficking? Don't be AFRAID to look at many of reservations as well.
- Have you heard yet that the BIA had to go in and take over children's services on the Spirit Lake Reservation? This is the link to one article .
- Have you heard about the "Native Mob" now active on reservations in five states? This is the link to an article.
One of the Senate staff members said her Senator would like to do hearings
Lake. I would love to see
that happen - as well as inquiries into the gang activity and harm to children
occurring on many reservations. Spirit
Lake is not isolated.
PLEASE CONTACT your Senators and encourage/support them in taking
What this girl said today matches what I was told by another Leech Lake family last week. What they shared with us is horrific.
We NEED to let our Senators know that this is not OK in America. They MUST make is stop!
1) ASK YOUR SENATOR to contact Paul Wolf in Senator Cantwell's office - to tell Senator Cantwell that ICWA needs to be on her agenda for this session. They are preparing and setting this sessions agenda RIGHT NOW. If ICWA is NOT put on her agenda for the session - it will not be discussed for changes this year nor probably next. WE NEED AS MANY SENATORS AS POSSIBLE - ALL OF THEM - TO CALL PAUL WOLF and ask that ICWA be on Senator Cantwell's agenda!
2) ASK YOUR SENATOR to contact Paul Wolf in Senator Cantwell's office and press for hearings on Spirit Lake and other reservations were abuse of children is rampant!
3) PLEASE CONTINUE TO PRAY FOR THE CHILDREN, FOR US - AND FOR THE WORK IN FRONT OF US!