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Published November 20, 2013, 07:39 PM

Tribal members speak out about the embattled social services program

Tribal members on the Spirit Lake Nation got to speak their mind Wednesday about the tribe's embattled social services program. Several children have died on the reservation in the last few years.

By: Adam Ladwig, WDAZ

Tribal members on the Spirit Lake Nation got to speak their mind Wednesday about the tribe's embattled social services program. Several children have died on the reservation in the last few years.

Wednesday Tribal members criticized what they say is a lack of help with some serious issues. Tribal members didn't sugarcoat their feelings while speaking with local, state and federal officials.

Wednesday's public forum came after two days of meetings on social services. Officials with the tribe, county, state, and BIA had discussed how to improve tribal social services. But tribal members had different concerns, blasting the BIA, accusing the agency of ignoring child abuse complaints and not bringing enough resources to the reservation. But tribal officials and regular tribal members say the conversation was a step in the right direction to keep children safe.

There were some positive developments from the meetings. Tribal Chairman Russ McDonald announced the tribe will be able to hire a third social services case worker. McDonald says he hopes to have similar meetings bringing different agencies together about every three months.

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