AP Photo/Tulsa World, Mike Simons, File
Veronica, now 4, smiles in a bathroom of the Cherokee Nation Jack Brown Center in Tahlequah, Oklahoma on August 6, 2013.

NICWA, NCAI Applaud UN for Calling on U.S. to Protect Veronica

ICTMN Staff
9/11/13

The National Indian Child Welfare Association (NICWA), the National Congress of American Indians (NCAI), and Angel Smith, an independent attorney appointed by the District Court of the Cherokee Nation and “Next Friend in the filing,” are applauding  yesterday's action by the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples James Anaya calling for state, federal, and tribal authorities in the United States to take all necessary measures to ensure that the well-being and human rights of Veronica Brown, the 4-year-old Cherokee child at the center of a highly contentious custody dispute, are protected.

RELATED: United Nations Demands Respect for Veronica's Human Rights

Anaya’s office in a release September 10 pointed out that the Indigenous rights are guaranteed by various international instruments subscribed to or endorsed by the United States, stating, “I urge the relevant authorities, as well as all parties involved in the custody dispute, to ensure the best interests of Veronica, fully taking into account her rights to maintain her cultural identity and to maintain relations with her indigenous family and people.”
 
NICWA, NCAI, and Smith, who had brought their concerns to the Special Rapporteur’s attention, hailed the announcement as corroboration of the concerns raised both in the federal civil rights lawsuit on behalf of Veronica in July and in ongoing legal matters in Oklahoma.
 
Among the possible human rights violations is the forced removal of Veronica from her Indian family and tribal nation without adequate protection or recognition of her right to culture. Such removal violates her right to culture, education, family, and tribal nation as guaranteed by Articles 7 and 8 of the U.N. Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and Article 27 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.
 
The executive directors of two leading national organizations, NICWA’s Terry Cross and NCAI’s Jacqueline Pata, called for the national conversation about the case to focus on Veronica’s human and civil rights.
 
“These rights are being violated by the failure of the courts to provide Veronica, her tribal nation, and her extended family with opportunities to be heard regarding her best interests,” said Cross. “What the U.N.’s involvement indicates is that we must all agree to turn our focus back to Veronica. When we do, it becomes disturbingly clear that the courts have utterly failed to protect what is guaranteed to her by international law and established treaties, best adoption practices, and in my opinion, basic tenets of decency. Her rights have been violated, pure and simple.”
 
“We commend the Special Rapporteur for engaging on this issue—it’s a vital step for protecting all Indigenous children throughout the world. It’s important to note that these are violations of international laws recognized and ratified by the United States long ago, not external forces weighing in on domestic laws,” said Pata. “Veronica, and all similarly situated Indian children, families, and tribal nations, have deeply felt interests in maintaining their individual and collective rights to family, culture, and community. These basic human rights, along with the fundamental principles of self-determination, non-discrimination, due process, and equality, must be protected.”
 
Smith agreed, stating, “Of course the facts of these matters are heart aching. Even so, it is important and required that when considering Veronica’s rights and protections to acknowledge that, as an Indigenous child, she holds the rights of continued connection to her family, her culture and community. It has been tragic that, in the media firestorm following this case the last two years, so little attention has been paid to Veronica’s basic human rights. These are rights and protections due her—due to Veronica—and are independent of any other individual involved in these matters. Veronica's rights and interests must be considered.”
 
Smith continued, “If she were any other child, in any other case, her present situation, needs, and rights would be considered and would have been part of the determination. Today, Veronica is a four-year-old little girl with her own view of her daily world and her own identity. She has her own words, and her own voice. It is time Veronica is heard because it is, after all, Veronica’s life.”

You need to be logged in in order to post comments
Please use the log in option at the bottom of this page

POST A COMMENT

Comments

builds-the-fire's picture
builds-the-fire
Submitted by builds-the-fire on
I feel all of the above is true, and Veronica's rights must be protected and respected. However, she is a 4-year-old child. I feel this case is as much about parental rights as it is doing what's best for Veronica. She can not care for herself, so what has to be looked at is how is she being cared for by her father. She is the picture of a well-cared-for child. Children should never be viewed as wards of the state to be handled as the state see fit. They are gifts from God. If her father were a parent who mercilessly beat and/or starved his child, then yes, the state should step in if extended family does not. There are enough people looking for their biological parents that there is a lucrative industry built around helping adult children find their biological parents. The state does not need to create another one with “Baby Veronica” when she is obviously in the loving care of her father--Dusten Brown--his wife, her sister, and her extended family.

iphone4 ケース's picture
iphone4 ケース
Submitted by iphone4 ケース on
名鑑の見方改選数の横の数字は立候補者数。ただ、松田は選考会2位。ドゥシャノフ氏(50)の指導を受けてレベルを上げていった。ブレイク(春休み)を前に、フロリダ旅行に出かける計画を立て、その資金を強盗で調達しようと企てる。計画は成功し、待ちに待ったスプリング?0 コロンビア 2013/9/10 ベネズエラ 3?2 アルゼンチン 2011/11/15 チリ 2?練習後も「先生、気づいたことはないですか」といつも聞いてきた。井上は最後まで冒険野郎だったし、負けると分かっていても立ち向かった。 ◇難産だった一人息子… 一人息子のみきおさんは56年7月21日に生まれた。

エアジョーダン 新作's picture
エアジョーダン 新作
Submitted by エアジョーダン 新作 on
in part,C."When you see a squirrel scratching the flightless insect pests that torment wild mammals, get ready to be wowed with wonderful word fun from ‘Just Words’ -- a new word game to play by yourself or against a computer. Just Words uses the official tournaments word lists OWK2 (also known as TWL06), "The Aging of the Baby Boom and the Growing Care Gap" by the AARP Public Policy Institute As the population of older people increases in the next 20 years the number of adults in their primary caregiving years (ages 45 to 64) is projected to remain flat This means the availability of family caregivers mostly adult children to arrange coordinate provide and/or pay for long-term care services is expected to decline However more than two-thirds of Americans believe that they will be able to rely on their families to meet their long-term care needs "The future looks very unlike the past" said Lynn Feinberg AARP senior policy adviser and one of the reports authors "We have more women in the workforce who are juggling caregiving and work There are a greater number of people living at a distance There is a huge number of people who dont have any living children We have to look at public as well as private community solutions to long-term care"The AARP report is a cautionary tale for todays caregivers and other midlife individuals You may be caring for your mom or dad now but who will care for you "Boomers who are the large cohort of caregivers have to start thinking ahead as they are providing care" said Donald Redfoot AARP senior strategic policy adviser and co-author of the report To help you plan for your long-term care needs AARP has created a 40-day challenge called "Decide Create Share" Although it is geared toward women in their 40s 50s and 60s guys should join in too Go to and take the pledgeThere are seven steps over the course of 40 days The site has a target date to finish by Oct 13 But go ahead and start when you can Youll get e-mail reminders outlining the things you have to do such as telling people where you keep important documents You can download a worksheet that provides guidance about the information youll need to provide Theres a long-term calculator that lets you see the average cost of long-term care in your stateIve been the long-term caregiver for several relatives Because I know the toll it takes Ive taken a personal pledge to put in place a plan to make it easier for my children to take care of me Isnt it time you decide create and share your planReaders may write to Michelle Singletary at The Washington Post 1150 15th St NW Washington DC 20071 or singletarym@washpostcom Personal responses may not be possible and comments or questions may be used in a future column with the writers name unless otherwise requested To read previous Color of Money columns go to Funny ha ha.No media circus ensued." a low-fi weird and wonderful two-hander featuring Paul Rudd and Emile Hirsch Loosely based on a 2011 Icelandic film called "" Greens "Prince Avalanche" often sounds as if its been translated from a foreign language in the best sense With its surreal backdrop of a burned-out forest its balance of drama and comedy (with a touch of the supernatural) and protagonists worthy of a Samuel Beckett play "Prince Avalanche" is that refreshing movie that looks and sounds only like itself Rudd and Hirsch play Alvin and Lance who in 1988 are painting yellow lines down a Texas highway after a series of forest fires have ravaged the nearby land and homes Making their awkward way down the blacktop in a ramshackle truck and following strict rules on the use of a boombox these two misfits continually bicker and misunderstand each other usually making peace by the time they share their canvas tent come nightfallAlthough Alvin and Lances encounters are frequently amusing Alvin a mustached know-it-all who fancies himself a deep thinker and outdoorsman is continually looking disapprovingly through his aviators at the shaggy shambling Lance a would-be Lothario in his late 20s "Prince Avalanche" comes most vividly to life when the two men are revealing their inner selves through pure action ("Can we just enjoy the silence" is a recurring tag line)Working with longtime collaborators including cinematographer Tim Orr and the band Green creates an all-enveloping world that begins to feel utterly timeless and self-enclosed In one trippy sequence Alvin putters around the campsite alone frying up a squirrel hes caught taking a handful of prescription meds and communing with nature; later he engages in an impromptu pantomime in the charred remains of exurban sprawlThe net effect is funny sad and psychedelic all at once and as Green subtly pulls the lens back "Prince Avalanche" becomes less a quirky buddy comedy than a winsome parable about people putting their lives back together moment by stumbling moment With Orrs observant close-ups of insects and small animals and a musical score that swells with emotion "Prince Avalanche" is a work of eccentric but often profound beauty That old Green magic it seems is back????R At the West End Cinema Contains some sexual content 94 minutes

Michelle George's picture
Michelle George
Submitted by Michelle George on
Thank you Creator, forever watching over our babies!!! Thank you!! From Onondaga Nation!!!! DIPHR, thank GOD!!!

Michelle George's picture
Michelle George
Submitted by Michelle George on
Thank you Creator, forever watching over our babies!!! Thank you!! From Onondaga Nation!!!! DIPHR, thank GOD!!!
6