Hello Indian Child Welfare Worker!

February 2, 2007


In our experience, the ICW Worker is often the only person in their office.  Sometimes there are two or three workers but this doesn’t seem to be the norm.  That means you are often “by yourself” when you are working a case.  That puts  you at some risk. The ICW worker should always use good judgment when dealing with clients.  This can include:

1.      Find another tribal staff member to go with you when making home visits, particularly in case situations where there is a potential for violence.

2.      Take threats seriously and report them to law enforcement. If any previous threats have been made, the ICW worker should always request law enforcement to be present at visits.

3.      Try to avoid staying in the office alone after working hours.  When this is unavoidable – notify tribal law enforcement that you are working late and the time you expect to leave the building. Request an escort to your car if anyone has recently threatened you.    

4.      Be alert. Leave any home where drug use or aggressive behavior is occurring. Do not go to a client’s house late at night by yourself, if you are being followed in a car – drive to the police station and blow your horn the whole way.    

5.      Keep a list of emergency phone numbers with you at all times.