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CDSS Tribal Consultation Policy

The CDSS Tribal Consultation Policy (TCP) and was finalized on June 6, 2017 in accordance with Governor Edmund Brown’s Executive Order B-10-11 and the California Health and Human Services (CHHS) Agency's TCP and establishes a firm commitment to communication and consultation with California Indian Tribes.The TCP provides a framework for elected officials or other designated representatives of tribal governments to provide meaningful input into the development of regulations, rules, and policies on matters that may affect tribal communities.  A subsequent letter announcing the TCP was distributed to Tribal Leaders on August 2, 2017.

Currently, the CDSS is rolling out a Tribal Consultation Strategy that includes several phases of tribal inclusion.These phases consist of:

  • Disseminating the TCP to all tribes
  • Inviting Tribal Leaders to consult on the CDSS Tribal Engagement Strategy
  • Visiting tribes who request consultation
  • Developing the Tribal Engagement Strategy based on consultation input
  • Convening a Tribal Consultation Summit on CDSS issues that impact tribes
  • Developing a Tribal Advisory Body and OTA Strategy for Engagement


TCP Listening Sessions

The CDSS co-chaired two listening sessions at the 20th Annual California Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) Conference on June 25 and 27, 2013 and one listening session at the 21st Annual California ICWA Conference on June 19, 2014 with the intent to gather input about how to develop a formal TCP. See below for a description of the conference sessions and transcripts from those sessions.

Description of 2013 Listening Session

Description of 2014 Listening Session

Transcripts of Listening Sessions

These sessions are an important step toward establishing a formal consultation process with tribal nations regarding significant child welfare issues, and the CDSS understands that tribal leadership participation is instrumental in strengthening our state-to-tribal government relationship.


Contact Us

Office of Tribal Affairs
 744 P Street, MS 8-17-35
Sacramento, CA 95814
(916) 651-6160 Main Line
TribalAffairs@dss.ca.gov
Heather Hostler, OTA Director
Will Lightbourne, Tribal Liaison


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