Reply to Inquiry Regarding DNA Tests To Determine Blood Quantum
July 21, 2013 § Leave a comment
July 21, 2013, The following is my reply to an inquiry I received regarding DNA testing to determine blood quantum (for the eventual purpose of obtaining a North American Indian Blood Quantum Letter and North American Indian Status Card). I have received nearly a dozen ‘DNA testing for blood quantum’ inquiries since July 1, 2013. If anyone has any additional, reliable information please share. Thank you.
Thank you very much for getting in touch with USA Placed Victims-Survivors of Canadian Scoops.
I am going to forward your inquiry anonymously to a few more people, including ‘HWS’, who might be able to provide you with additional guidance based on their professional capabilities and experience with genetic testing, because as far as I know there is no general DNA test that can identify blood quantum. DNA tests for this purpose have been discussed but, again, so far, none are cited by the authorities that issue the Blood Quantum Letters and Status Cards as reliable for this purpose.
When I share your inquiry with them I will NOT include your name, it will be anonymous; I respect your privacy.
My experience with assessing the amount of blood quantum is the following:
1. Assuming that you know the names of your biological parents and/or grandparents (name of any biological relative) AND the Indian Band in Canada that they are related to, call the office for that Indian Band, give them names of your relatives. The Indian Band will ask that you put your request for your blood quantum letter in writing. The bands themselves are usually very helpful. The Indian Band issues the Blood Quantum Letter.
2. If you don’t know the Indian Band but you do know the name you were given by your biological family and/or you know the names of biological relatives contact Indian & Northern Affairs Canada (also known as INAC). INAC will ask you to send them a written request for information on these relatives. INAC issues the North American Indian Status Card.
Word of Caution: INAC has some very helpful people working within it AND INAC has some people who seem only determined to make it difficult for anyone in USA to collect this information. If you get the latter, difficult INAC person, demand that they provide you with this information that you are entitled to. Remind them that you are entitled to this information.
3. If the above guidance is not sufficient please let me know and I will provide further guidance.
Again, gaining these documents is a tricky process, you have to collect the information without – if you are not a USA Citizen and have been here without proper documentation – triggering USCIS. Admittedly, what makes it more difficult is that there is NO mechanism in place between USA & Canada specifically set up to address these inquiries. There should be and a goal of USA Placed Victims-Survivors of Canadian Scoops is to encourage legislators in USA AND Canada to fund that capability. Until then however each has to do it on their own.
Again, thank you for contacting me. And, as you have questions feel free to reach out to me and I will try to answer myself or find someone else who can.
USA Placed Victims-Survivors of Canadian Scoops