NALSA Panel - Deconstructing the “Baby Veronica” Case: Implications for the Future of the Indian Child Welfare Act

February 24, 2014

On February 21, 2014, the Native American Law Students Association (NALSA) hosted a panel on the recent Baby Veronica case and the Indian Child Welfare Act at Yale Law School’s annual Rebellious Lawyering Conference. Speakers included Jacqueline Pata, Executive Director of the National Congress of American Indians (NCAI); Joel West Williams, Staff Attorney at the Native American Rights Fund (NARF); and Claire Chung, a third-year law student who worked on Adoptive Couple v. Baby Girl as a part of her work for the Yale Supreme Court Advocacy Clinic. Panelists explored the history behind the Indian Child Welfare Act, its relevance to Indian child welfare issues today, and the implications of the “Baby Veronica” decision for the future placement of Native children. Additionally, panelists discussed how their organizations collaborated with both tribal and non-tribal stakeholders to develop legal, media, and other advocacy strategies for the case as part of NCAI and NARF’s joint Tribal Supreme Court Project.

For more information on the panel, see coverage of the event in this Indian Country Today article. (