Father 1/4 tribal (Daughter, 1/8) – doesn’t know why ICWA involved

 

October 1, 2006

I am 23 years old ….  My mother is 1/2 Cherokee and I am 1/4 and my daughter is 1/8,  this child is currently foster care.  I was not married to her mother and we did not reside together.  I am attempting to get custody of my daughter (paternity was proven) and the recommendations of the … DHS is citing – “The child comes under the Indian Child Welfaire Act, and the child’s tribe recommends permanent placement in long-term foster care.”   As I am only 25% I thought that I did not qualify to belong to a tribe, as well as my daughter who is 12.5%.   I have followed all recommendations of the court and DHS (even when DHS has made it difficult by not giving me information in a timely manner)  to get custody of my daugter.  Her mother lost custody as a result of failure to thrive.  The child is 18 months old and only weighs 15 lbs.

  • I have a pernament job.
  • I rent a room in the home of my girlfriend’s parents (they have extra room for the child.)
  • I have setup a plan for child care while I am at work.  My girlfriend attends classes at college in the evenings, her father is home before she leaves for classes.  Her mother is a nurse with local CMH.
  • My girlfriend and I participate in child parenting classes together.
  • I have established a livable budget and reduced my debt.
  • I have arranged for parenting classes in my local area (50 miles from my daughter);
  • I have scheduled and will pay for my own psychiatric evaluation by a local PhD;
  • I visit my daughter every week at assigned visitation time (50 miles away).
  • I will attend their parenting classes once I have participated in several classes available to me in my own community.

I am trying to get support and understanding of the Indian Child Welfare Act and how it is recommended that I not receive custody of my daughter or show I amy contact in Michigan to get assistance.

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