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New York Times: Indian children being left behind

The New York Times runs a story that cites a national crisis facing Indian children, who suffer from high rates of suicide, are more likely to get into fights at school and carry weapons to school, and have high rates of substance abuse.

Government statistics provide the background for the state of Indian children. Nearly 10,000 Indian and Alaska Native children, or about 1.2 percent, are in foster care, according to the Department of Health and Human Services.

In comparison, 1.8 percent of African-American children and about 0.5 percent of white children are in foster care but the HHS data may not tell the whole story. According to the National Indian Child Welfare Association, 25,000 Indian children, or 3 percent, live in foster care or with relatives, a figure that doesn't include Alaska Natives.

On the Lummi Nation in Washington, a full 11 percent of the children are in foster care or living with relatives. Statewide, 8 percent of Indian children are in foster care. The tribe is using $2 million in gaming revenues to open a safe house and provide counselors for youth.

Get the Story:
Crisis of Indian Children Intensifies as Families Fail (The New York Times 4/5)

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