House Votes to Protect Native Children
Santa Fe, NM – Today, a House Memorial sponsored by Reps. Georgene Louis (D-Albuquerque) and Derrick Lente (D-Sandia Pueblo) to protect the rights of Native children and tribes, passed the House Floor. House Memorial 83 requests the Tribal Indian Child Welfare Consortium make recommendations to ensure the local governments and the state are fulfilling the obligations set out in the Indian Child Welfare Act of 1978.
“Even decades after the Indian Child Welfare Act passed, Native children in New Mexico continue to be underserved at a rate much higher than their non-Native counterparts,” said Rep. Georgene Louis. “Our communities deserve better, and this memorial is critical to addressing the issues our Native communities continue to face.”
“The Indian Child Welfare Act went a long way in addressing the barriers discrimination that Native communities face, but we still have a long way to go. This memorial seeks to fully realize everything the Indian Child Welfare Act sets out to do,” said Rep. Derrick Lente.
House Memorial 75 directs a group of agencies to work together to develop policy regarding the education, health, social welfare, behavioral health, and other essential services to the 23 Native American tribes of New Mexico. The named participants would be:
- New Mexico Clearinghouse for Suicide Prevention
- New Mexico Indian Title VI coalition of the Indian area agency on aging
- Southwest Indian Law Clinic
- American Indian language policy research and treatment center
- Institute for indigenous knowledge and development
- Tribal libraries program
- Indian education advisory council
- New Mexico tribal Indian child welfare social workers consortium
- Tewa Women United
- Tribal-state judicial consortium
House Democrats are committed to honoring the government to government relationship with tribes, pueblos, and nations.