OKMULGEE, Oklahoma – The Muscogee (Creek) Nation Child and Family Services Administration cancelled their End Child Abuse Walk when weather conditions were not cooperative with the event’s activities. The purpose of the public event was to bring awareness to child abuse, and provide education on CFSA resources. Newly appointed MCN Attorney General Geri Wisner was scheduled to be a guest speaker. The walk was originally scheduled for 1:00 PM on April 28 at the walking trail behind the childcare building. A morning thunderstorm spoiled hopes for a dry event. There are no immediate plans to reschedule the walk, however CFSA will host another event in May to recognize foster care.
Ann Davis is the director of the MCN Children and Family Services Administration. She oversees events hosted by CFSA.
These events are important because they put a spotlight on uncomfortable, yet important topics. Davis believes that we are all responsible for raising the next generation. “I think that we all play a part in the care and treatment of children, whether you’re a teacher or a coach or a doctor or a nurse or an auntie, or relative.” Davis said. “I think its just important to have awareness, and not only have awareness of where there might be child abuse but know how to respond to it.”
Child abuse is an issue found on and off the Muscogee (Creek) Nation Reservation.
Services to fight child abuse are available to MCN citizens. If you are experiencing child abuse in your family Davis said one of the most important things to do is to make a report so that it can be assessed what appropriate services need to be recommended.
CFSA has also faced challenges in the wake of the landmark McGirt ruling.
“With the McGirt ruling that has brought a lot more cases, work, a lot more responsibilities to us,” Davis said “One of the challenges we have right now is the need to expand our work, the number of workers we have to respond.”
The End Child Abuse Walk, and the foster care recognition event are just a couple of the many services CFSA provides for MCN citizens.
Promoting Safe & Stable Families is a service that helps prevent children who may be at risk of removal. The Family Protection Unit investigates reports of child neglect.
State Reunification Services works with cases that are involved within the State of Oklahoma Child Welfare System. Their purpose is to make sure proper services are offered to families to mitigate issues with the state. They also make sure Indian Child Welfare Act protections are followed.
CFSA also has a team that licenses foster care and adoptive homes. Lastly, CFSA offers tribal reunification which is responsible for families involved with child welfare issues within the Muscogee (Creek) Nation.
If you need to report child abuse/neglect you can contact the Oklahoma Department of Human Services at (800) 522-3511 or Muscogee (Creek) Nation Child & Family Services Administration at (800) 482-1979.