(A) Because of the Tribe’s preference for a nonadversarial approach to resolution of internal conflicts involving the Tribe’s children and families, the Tribal Court judge, at any stage of the proceedings under this Code, may order the relevant parties to participate in the Tribe’s confidential Peacemaker Mediation Forum. Mediations so ordered shall be conducted pursuant to the Karuk Tribe’s Peacemaker Mediation Forum’s written guidelines.
(B) Additionally, the Tribal Court judge may order the child’s family to participate in family unity, to provide the child’s family with an opportunity to establish a plan in conjunction with Karuk Child Welfare Services, family, friends and other relevant professionals that will ensure the safety of the child. Family unity shall be conducted and facilitated according to that program’s written guidelines. The Children and Family Code (this title) recognizes a preference for family decision-making opposed to judicial intervention and determination, thereby encouraging families to take seriously the issues with which they are presented.
(C) Once the parties have reached a mediated/facilitated services plan for the family, the plan shall be presented to the Tribal Court judge who shall review the plan, listen to any argument by any of the professionals or family members involved in the case, and shall approve, modify, or disapprove of the plan.
(D) If the judge disapproves the plan, the judge may send the family back for an additional conference, family unity or mediation, or may set the case for hearing. If the judge approves the plan, he or she shall convert the plan, including any judicial modifications, into a valid Tribal Court order.