Illinois Department of Children and Family Services
FFY 2011 Annual Progress and Services Report
f) A parent or Indian custodian may withdraw consent to a foster care placement under State
law at any time and, upon such withdrawal, the child shall be returned to the parent or Indian
custodian when the sole basis of placement was the consent.
g) When a parent of an Indian child has executed a surrender or consent for adoption, the
surrender or consent may be withdrawn by the parent for any reason at any time prior to the
entry of an order terminating that parent's parental rights or an order of adoption, as the case
may be, and the child shall be returned to the parent.
h) After the entry of an order of adoption of an Indian child, the parent may petition the court to
vacate the order for adoption on the grounds that his or her consent was obtained through fraud
or duress. If the court finds that the consent was obtained through fraud or duress, the court
shall vacate the order of adoption and return the child to the parent. No action to void or revoke
a consent to or surrender for adoption based on fraud or duress may be commenced after 24
months from the date of the entry of the order for adoption.
Indian Child Welfare Advocacy Program
The Department’s Indian Child Welfare Advocacy Program was developed to serve Indian
Children and their immediate family members and to ensure compliance with the Indian Child
Welfare Act. Increased awareness and compliance with the Indian Child Welfare Act through
ongoing education and training of child welfare staff has resulted in increased timeliness of
referral to the program. From May 2010 through May 2011, there have been approximately
107 new referrals to the ICWA program to inquire as to a child’s possible Native American
heritage and to obtain information regarding necessary compliance with the Act. Increased
awareness of the importance of the Indian Child Welfare Act in providing child welfare
services has led to increased referrals to the program at the point of investigation and/or
opening of an intact family case to prevent out of home placement of a Native American child.
DCFS-ICWA Program Advocates serve as liaisons between the court, the child’s case work
team and tribal representative(s) for the child. The program works with tribal representatives
through the country to determine a child’s eligibility under ICWA, as well as to ensure the
provision of child welfare services consistent with its mandates. DCFS ICWA Advocates
maintain ongoing communication with the child’s tribe and report any recommendations and
resources identified by the tribe to the court and child’s case management team. The ICWA
advocates work with the child’s family team including identified tribal representatives to
review service and case planning provisions for the child and family to ensure that active
efforts are made consistent with the Indian Child Welfare Act to prevent disruption and/or
facilitate reunification of the child with their family, as well as ensure that diligent efforts are
made in identifying and locating extended family resources for the child.
If a determination is made that a child is eligible for services under the Indian Child Welfare
Act, the ICWA Advocates work closely with the child’s tribal representatives, the court, the
child’s family and case management team to ensure coordination of services consistent with the
Indian Child Welfare Act including active efforts in service delivery to the family, diligent
search for members of the child’s family as potential resources and education/advocacy
regarding the child’s Native heritage. In situations in which a child is placed in a non-Indian
foster or adoptive home, the ICWA advocate provides the foster or adoptive parents with
referrals and resources to address the unique needs of the Indian child and his/her family.
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