Editorial: Spirit Lake Nation problems need sharper attention

"The latest chapter in the outrageous saga of Spirit Lake Nation’s children is Sen. Kent Conrad’s, D-N.D., determination to get to the bottom of the mess on the northeastern North Dakota American Indian reservation. After getting no responses to his inquiries from tribal officials, and after one of his top staffers came back from a fact-finding tour “visibly shaken” by what she saw, a federal “strike team” will be dispatched to the reservation Monday to address issues after Conrad requested such a team from the secretary of the Interior.

The senator’s action and the dispatching of the strike team follows a second scathing indictment from a federal child welfare agency that charged Spirit Lake child protection services have done little or nothing to improve conditions for children at risk. The situation “has become even worse …” said Thomas Sullivan, Denver regional administrator for the U.S. Administration for Children and Families."

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Forum editorial: Sharper focus on Spirit Lake (The Fargo Forum 8/26)

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