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Protecting Confidential Tribal Records



Date: November 5 - 6, 2014
Location: Las Vegas, NV
Tuition:   $779

Two pieces of federal legislation — the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and the Privacy Act — are critical to your tribal organization. You may have specific obligations, but you can also enjoy certain benefits if you have a general understanding of both laws. This two-day workshop unlocks the mystery surrounding these often confusing laws and explains how records are treated under self-determination.

During this class, you’ll learn how to get information from the federal government through a FOIA request, examine the importance of maintaining confidentiality and take away practical suggestions for obtaining and protecting information. You’ll also get an overview of the various types of records that need to be protected.

This comprehensive course includes case studies, details of legislation and case law while providing invaluable resource tools, such as sample forms, letters and policies. Register today.


T O P I C S   I N C L U D E
Background and Overview
  • Understanding the terminology
  • Confidentiality vs. anonymity
  • Exempt documents
  • Federal Register language
  • Definition of a “record”
  • Federal, state and tribal law
Types of Confidential Records
  • Children’s (Indian Child Welfare Act and adoption)
  • Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)
  • Victims
  • Law enforcement
  • Enrollment
  • Housing
  • Employment
  • Medical
  • Electronic
Freedom of Information Act (FOIA)
  • Tribal rights under FOIA
  • Understanding the exemptions and how they apply to tribes
  • Applicability and exemptions
  • The Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA) and FOIA
Requesting Records Under FOIA
  • Letters of request and fees
  • Disclosures and exemptions
  • Appealing denials under FOIA
  • Sample letters of request and appeal
Sources of Information
  • Relevant publications
  • Government agencies
  • Government “freebies”
Case Law
  • Department of the Interior v. Klamath Water Users Protective Association
  • Impact on tribes
  • Exemptions
  • Trust relationship between tribes and the federal government
Developing a Tribal FOIA Ordinance
  • Should tribes enact their own ordinances?
  • Limits on disclosure
  • Background checks
Maintaining Confidentiality
  • Records retention requirements
  • Sensible suggestions
  • Ethical and legal obligations
  • Mandated reporting (e.g., school officials, health care providers)
  • Avoiding breaches of confidentiality
The Privacy Act
  • Purpose and context of the Act
  • Applicability
  • Locating records
  • Protecting personal records
  • Special rules that apply to medical records
  • Amending records
  • Penalties
Making a Privacy Act Request
  • Letters of request and fees
  • Disclosure and exemptions
  • Understanding the appeals procedure for denial access
  • Sample letters of request and appeal
Developing a Tribal Privacy Code
  • Reasons for developing a code
  • Considerations and key components of a tribal privacy ordinance
Maintaining Records
  • Avoiding inappropriate disclosure of tribal records
  • Obtaining permission for disclosure
  • Confidential filing systems
  • Rules for records management
  • Disposing of and destroying records
  • Dealing with unprotected records under P.L. 93-638
Protecting Tribal Records
  • Computer matching and the Privacy Act
  • Tribal clinics and hospitals
  • Student records
  • Threats to privacy
Using the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)
  • Managing electronic and paper records
  • Procedures for securing records properly
  • Controlling access
  • Multiple providers and information sharing
  • Contracting with outside providers
  • Using HIPAA-compliant language
Evaluating Your HIPAA Information Needs
  • Identifying the information that you need
  • Identifying the location of the need
  • Developing a plan
  • Reviewing the process

*Topics subject to change.

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