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The White Earth Band of Ojibwe will begin to take over legal responsibility for providing human services to tribal members, starting early this year. This transfer will occur first with tribal members living in Mahnomen County and will start with the Medical Assistance (Medicaid) program, then continue in phases with other human services programs.
According to DHS Director of Indian Policy Vern LaPlante, DHS is currently working closely with the White Earth Nation and Mahnomen County to ensure a smooth transition. In accordance with authorizing legislation passed by the Legislature in 2011, DHS will then work with Becker and Clearwater counties.
"The White Earth Nation is interested in providing human services to their own members," he said. "DHS, the White Earth Nation and counties are committed to successful implementation of this transfer so that clients enrolled in human services programs continue to receive the services they need."
“The White Earth Nation has provided timely, culturally sensitive and quality health and human services to our members for many years," said Chairwoman Erma J. Vizenor. "We look forward to the opportunity to expand beyond the many services we currently offer to provide a more seamless range of services for those in need of them.”
The White Earth Nation currently provides home health care and long-term care consulting to its members and will build on those services to provide an array of human services, including economic assistance, child welfare and health care.
More information about the transfer project will be posted on the DHS website page for the human services transfer to the White Earth Nation and the White Earth Nation website, http://whiteearth.com/.