Cherokees in NC to create their own social services agency

Cherokees in NC to create their own social services agency

Angry over the way Swain County social services workers handled a child abuse case in which a 15-month old girl died, a Native American tribe is planning to form its own agency to protect children on a North Carolina reservation.

A special committee of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians will appoint a board for the proposed social services agency, said Ruth McCoy, a committee member, told The Associated Press. Once the board is appointed, it will hire a director, she said.

Other details will have to be worked out, including funding and hiring social services workers, but McCoy said appointing a board is a critical first step.“We’re doing this to protect our children,” said McCoy, who works for the Bureau of Indian Affairs. “The goal is to have it going in the next year. After everything that’s happened, this is something the chief has been working on, and we want to do.”

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