We acknowledge that the Environmental Science Center operates from the traditional and stolen homelands of Coast Salish Peoples, specifically the dxʷdəwʔabš (“People of the Inside” – Duwamish), suq̀ʷabš (“People of Clear Salt Water” – Suquamish) and Muckleshoot Tribe. We recognize and honor the land itself and all tribal members of the past, present and future, including Indigenous teachers and scientists. We are grateful for the ways Indigenous Peoples continue to be caretakers of this land and all that live here, and we acknowledge how their stewardship was disrupted by the theft and colonization of their land. We strive to build reciprocal and respectful relationships with the land and its Peoples, and to be in partnership and solidarity with local Tribes and Indigenous communities.
You’ll hear land acknowledgements at the beginning of ESC programs, and they may sound different depending on the location, age group and person delivering them. We offer land acknowledgements to honor the land itself and the people of it. Native people have been here since time immemorial and Native land was claimed, renamed, and repurposed forcefully through non-indigenous settlement. Systemic oppression continues to ignore Native identity, culture, history, and land ownership. Land acknowledgements address that erasure, but alone don’t create commitments. They require internal and external research, analysis, relationship building and continual action to be sincere, and to contribute to social and environmental justice.
We encourage all individuals and community groups to learn more about land acknowledgements, and about the Indigenous People of the land you are on. Below are some resources to support you in this process. It is also an ongoing one for us, so please reach out with any questions, concerns or feedback.