California Tribal Families Coalition advocates for improved and consistent county, state and federal policies that support Indian Child Welfare Act compliance, tribal sovereignty and the well-being of tribal children and families. In this effort, CTFC:
- Gathers information from tribes to identify policy priorities through listening sessions, tribal convenings, and ongoing tribal outreach.
- Conducts research and prepares reports, FAQs and webinars on important issues in Indian child welfare.
- Monitors county, state and federal policy implementation through participation in state and federal consultation efforts and workgroups, review of issued guidance and regulations, plans and reports, and legislation.
- Advocates for changes to proposed polices, guidance and legislation through oral and written comments including preparing model comments for tribes.
Through our advocacy over the past 5 years:
- California State Department of Social Services (CDSS) developed an Office of Tribal affairs to assist the Department in engaging and consulting with tribes on policies that affect tribal children.
- CDSS developed an ICWA Statewide Plan including the implementation of an ICWA Complaint Hotline for tribes and ICWA Data Dashboard.
- State implementation of the federal Family First Prevention Services Act includes requirements for the state and counties to engage and consult with tribes in the development of prevention services and to ensure tribal collaboration in the provision of prevention services to tribal children.
- Resource Family Approval Written Directives include specific county guidance to collaborate with tribal representatives to apply the social and cultural standards of the Indian community to every home approval for an Indian child.
- Tribal Customary Adoption – CTFC ensures regulations are reflective of the intent of the law and addressing conflicts with implementation of Resource Family Approval.
- Statewide Integrated Core Practice Model includes tribal collaboration guidance and consideration of culturally appropriate engagement and service provision strategies.
Current State Policy Efforts
Current Open Consultation/Collaborative Engagement Efforts:
- Tribal Advisory Committee (TAC)/Tribal Consultation
- December 9, 2022 – Agenda with Meeting Link
- California Annual Progress and Services Report (APSR)
- Second Round of Comments Due on 2023 APSR submitted by CDSS to ACF on June 30, 2022: August 11, 2022
- First Comment Round – Model Comment Letter for Tribes (due 6/10/22)
- First Comment Round – CTFC Comment Letter
- Second Comment Round – CTFC Comment Letter
- California Family First Prevention Services Act (FFPSA) Prevention Plan
- California ICWA Statewide Plan
- First Draft of ICWA State Plan – Model Comment Letter for Tribes (due 6/10/22)
- First Draft of ICWA State Plan – CTFC Comment Letter
- July 22, 2022: Last Consultation Date Invitation with Meeting Link (comments due on second draft on August 22, 2022)
- Second Draft of ICWA State Plan – CTFC Comment Letter
- October 24, 2022: Final Version of ICWA State Plan will be released
- October 28, 2022: First Regional Convening to Implement ICWA Statewide Plan (invitations to be sent to Tribal representatives that submitted a Letter of Interest to be on the Committee)
- Tribal Consultation Policy (TCP)
- First Draft of TCP – Model Comment Letter for Tribes (due 3/14/22)
- First Draft of TCP – CTFC Comment Letter
- July 26, 2022: Last Consultation Date Invitation with Meeting Link (comments due on second draft on August 25, 2022)
- Second Draft of TCP – CTFC Comment Letter (August 18, 2022)
- September 21, 2022: Third Draft/Finalize TCP at Annual Tribal Consultation Summit
- Third Draft of TCP – CTFC Comment Letter (September 29, 2022)
- November 2, 2022: Comments on Third Draft of TCP due to CDSS
- Tribal Advisory Committee (TAC) Charter
Current California Department of Social Services Workgroups:
- AFCARS Workgroup
- CFT/CANS Implementation Workgroup
- FFPSA Workgroup
- Placement Workgroup
- Resource Family Approval (RFA) Written Directives
- CTFC Comments on RFA Written Directives v. 8 (8/1/22)
- Written Directives v.8 (effective November 2, 2022)
- Structured Decision Making Workgroup
- TCA Workgroup
For more information about California Department of Social Services workgroups and meetings, click HERE.