The City of New Brighton invites its residents and greater community members to add land acknowledgments to their journey of healing.
A land acknowledgment is a message at the beginning of a meeting or gathering that acknowledges the people whose ancestral and current homelands we are on. Land acknowledgments allow us to pause and raise awareness, reflect, and relate to the harm that has been and continue to be done unto Native people. It also allows us an opportunity to commit to action, heal, and move forward together.
Land Acknowledgment Components
Every land acknowledgment should at least include the following three components:
Acknowledgment the people whose ancestral and current home lands you are on. Visit https://native-land.ca/ to learn more about territories, languages, and treaties.
Make visible both the history and current realities of Indigenous people. Native people have a deep history and culture beyond the impacts of colonization. Remember to share celebratory facts, but also be honest about the harm that was perpetrated by US federal and state government.
Commit to action. Determine what you can do beyond land acknowledgments as this is necessary in the healing process.
Additionally, consider the following:
Be intentional. Land acknowledgments can be a traumatic reminder of the history of genocide and oppression. What is it that you want your audience to know, feel, and believe after hearing your land acknowledgment.
Be relevant. Think of how you can highlight different aspects of Indigenous culture, history, or people as it relates to your work, audience, context, or topic.
Be dynamic. Land acknowledgments should evolve as your relationship to Indigenous people, culture, and history evolves. How can you keep life breathing through the words you speak?