On Monday, Californians will honor California Indians, Native Americans, and California indigenous peoples with Indigenous Peoples’ Day.
Last year, Governor Gavin Newsom issued a proclamation to recognize October 12, 2020 as Indigenous Peoples’ Day. CFA expects and hopes the Governor issues the same proclamation this year for October 11 (also known as Columbus Day) to formally end the shamefully antiquated glorification of Christopher Columbus’ campaign of oppression and extermination directed at Native Americans since 1492.
The Governor also apologized to California Indians for the suffering they endured throughout the state’s history; a small but important start in recognizing the systematic erasure of California Indians since the first colonizer stepped on this land.
As a union dedicated to anti-racism and social justice, CFA respects and honors Indian Country protocol by starting meetings and events with a Land Acknowledgment. Land Acknowledgments not only honor the land, but seek to recognize and to make visible the original people of California and Native American communities. CFA has asked all of its members and chapters to conduct land acknowledgments during official meetings. To better understand the traditional lands of the people you are living on, visit Native-Land.ca. To help get a better idea of Land Acknowledgement protocol, please visit the CSU San Marcos Cultural and Sovereignty Center guide.
There are a number of resources to read on Monday (and frankly everyday) to better understand the lived experience, cultures, traditions, and contributions of Native/Indigenous Peoples:
- Land-Grab Universities, How the United States funded land-grant universities with expropriated Indigenous lands, a recent investigation from High Country News;
- To Manage Wildfire, California Looks to What Tribes Have Known All Along from NPR;
- Untold History: The Survival of California’s Indians from KCET;
- This Land, a podcast from Crooked Media;
- How the Pandemic has Complicated Voting Access for Millions of Native Americans from PBS NewsHour;
- A Call to Return Land to Tribal Nations Grows Stronger, from Mother Jones