Whatcom Intergenerational High School acknowledges that we are occupying without permission the ancestral homelands of the Lummi (Lhaq’temish), the Nooksack (Nuxwsa’7aq), the Stillaguamish, the Nuwhaha, and the Coast Salish peoples, who have lived on and cultivated these lands and waterways since time immemorial. We also want to recognize especially the fact that our occupation has not come by peaceful means, but rather the forced removal of these peoples through the enactment of documents such as the Treaty of Point Elliot in 1855, which the United States has broken without penalty, and the Dawes Act of 1887. During our occupation, we hope to uplift the teachings these nations have shared with us, and to honor the histories they have had to endure because of us.
As we co-exist in this era, in which we all are facing climate crises, social inequality and injustice, and states threats against treaty rights, we ask you to join us in a moment of reflection on:
- How we benefit from occupying Indigenous lands,
- How we can educate ourselves about the state-sanctioned violence and other struggles that Indigenous peoples face, which we may have the privilege to be unaware of, and
- How we can integrate this reflection into our everyday consciousness and actions. Whatcom Intergenerational High School uses this acknowledgement here as a recognition of our responsibility to continue our learning of treaty histories, contemporary Indigenous experiences, and how we can better align ourselves as an institution of education with the truth. We offer our thanks and utmost respect to these nations, on whose lands we are located.
Unexhaustive List of Resources for Education and Getting Involved:
– The Dawes Act Summary
– Treaty of Point Elliot 1855
– All Eyes on Mi’kmaki
– United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples
– Whose Land Are You On?
– Red Pedagogy: Native American Social and Political Thought by Sandy Grande – An Indigenous Peoples History of the United States by Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz