Law | National

Conservative website urges readers to contact Choctaw Nation






Children of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma participate in an egg hunt in Tvshka Homma, Oklahoma, on March 5, 2016. Photo from Facebook

A conservative website is urging readers to contact the Choctaw Nation as it trumpets the alleged illegality of the Indian Child Welfare Act.

WND posted the toll-free number of the tribe in a story that quoted anti-ICWA attorney Lori Alvino McGill. She is representing a foster couple that doesn't want a Choctaw girl to live with her relatives and has represented adoption groups that called ICWA "unconstitutional."

“We’ll keep fighting for her, keep fighting for what’s right,” McGill told WND.

In August 2014, a California appeals court informed McGill and her clients that the girl falls under ICWA. That finding has not been overturned but the foster is still asking the California Supreme Court to overrule the placement determination made by the tribe.

Indian Country Today posted another statement from the tribe amid continued media attention to the dispute. It notes that the girl is now living in Utah and will grow up with her two biological sisters.

"From the very beginning of Lexi’s case, the goal was for Lexi to have a permanent home with her family," the statement reads. "The foster parents were always aware that Lexi’s presence in their home was intended to be temporary, as is the nature of foster care. The foster parents were also always aware that Lexi’s case fell under the federal and California Indian Child Welfare Acts."

Anti-Indian groups like the Citizens Equal Rights Alliance have long railed against ICWA, calling it a "race-based" law. Conservative groups and their allies in the media have picked up on the same theme in hopes of convincing the courts, Congress and state legislatures to weaken the rights of tribes in child welfare cases.

Get the Story:
Tribe used 'unconstitutional' law to snatch 6-year-old (WND 3/23)
Choctaw Nation shares its side of California child custody case (KXII 3/23)
Biological father of six-year-old girl torn from foster parents because she is part Native American is a violent drug criminal who bragged of 'white supremacist friends' (The Daily Mail 3/23)
Vigil held to support Page family after foster daughter, Lexi, taken (The Los Angeles Daily News 3/24)
‘Keep Lexi home': A foster family’s wrenching fight for a 6-year-old Choctaw girl (The Washington Post 3/24)

California Court of Appeal Decision:
In re Alexandria P., a Person Coming Under the Juvenile Court Law (August 15, 2014)

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