|Baby Veronica in Oklahoma (ICT PHOTO)|
RENO, Nev., June 25, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/
-- In the June 25th 5-4 decision in Adoptive Couple v. Baby Girl the United States Supreme Court upheld the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA), but reversed and remanded this case back to the South Carolina courts on a technicality. The narrow decision focused on the standard to determine whether this particular father's parental rights could be terminated.
"Today's decision sends a clear message that there is no question of ICWA's role as the most important law to protect Native children and families. The decision also affirms Congressional authority to protect Indian Children. While we are pleased the court has upheld ICWA, we're very disappointed for Dusten, Veronica, and the Brown family that the court has ruled to send the case back to the South Carolina courts on a technicality. However, the courts in South Carolina have previously affirmed that Dusten Brown is Veronica's father and that he is a fit parent. We are confident that his parental rights will be upheld, and that Veronica will stay with her family.
We remain committed to Native families and we will continue to support Dusten Brown's fight for his rights as a father and for Veronica to remain with her loving father, grandparents, and community. Dusten loves his daughter and has never given up in this process, and neither will we."
1. that it was in Veronica's best interests to be placed with her father; 2. that ICWA applied and was not unconstitutional; 3. the "Existing Indian Family" doctrine was inapplicable as an exception to the application of the ICWA in this case; 4. that the father did not voluntarily consent to the termination of his parental rights or the adoption; 5. the Appellants failed to prove by clear and convincing evidence that Father's parental rights should be terminated or that granting custody of Baby Girl to Father would likely result in serious emotional or physical damage to Baby Girl.