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Senate Bill Aimed at Reducing Child Abuse on Indian Lands

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Washington--The Senate Select Committee on Indian Affairs last week approved a wide-ranging measure that would authorize $92 million over the next four years to combat child abuse and family violence on Indian lands.

The "Indian child protective services and family violence prevention act," S 2340, sponsored by Senator John McCain, Republican of Arizona, would provide $3 million a year to establish Indian child resources centers within each area office of the Bureau of Indian Affairs.

The bill also would authorize grants to tribes totaling $10 million a year to establish child protective services that would have authority to investigate reports of abuse and neglect.

The measure also would authorize three-year matching grants totaling $10 million to encourage tribes to treat and prevent family violence and to shelter and assist victims.

The grants would cover 75 per4cent of the cost of such programs and would be administered by the Indian Health Service.

Senator Daniel K. Inouye, the chairman of the Senate panel and a co-sponsor of the bill, assured committee members that money could be found to fund the measure. Mr. Inouye is a senior member of the chamber's Appropriations Committee.

Report on 'Mini-Summits'

In a related development, the b.i.a. has issued a report on public testimony offered at a series of education "mini-summits" that it held across the West earlier this year. (See Education Week, Feb. 21, 1990.)

According to the report, the main concerns expressed by summit participants were inequities in the bia's school-funding formulas, the agency's inability to "forward-fund" educational programs, and long delays in the repair and maintenance of agency schools.--pw

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