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My family or a family member is being investigated by the dept for a child welfare complaint; what can I do?

The Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) of 1978 25 USC 1901 et. seq. was a law created to prevent the breakup of Indian families and to promote the stability and security of Indian tribes. There are culturally competent services available for you and/or your family.


  • Native American Affairs (NAA) MDHHS policy pertaining to Indian child welfare cases is found on the MDHHS public website and NAA website
  • The Native American Rights Fund (NARF) has an excellent resource for Indian families and caseworkers about ICWA and may be reviewed at
  • The National Indian Child Welfare Association (NICWA) has resources and training opportunities and may be contacted at

Michigan recently enacted Public Act 566, the Michigan Indian Family Preservation Act (MIFPA) MCL 712B. 1-41. which clarifies, enhances, and reaffirms ICWA implementation in Michigan child welfare services and courts. Information pertaining to MIFPA and ICWA are available on the NAA website at or MDHHS NAA Policy Manual at

Indian Outreach Workers (IOW) are available to assist Indian families in Michigan with social service complaints (See IOW contact information