On this Indigenous Peoples Day, it is important to recognize that having only one day to honor the Indigenous communities who have lived on this land since time immemorial is not enough. We invite you to join us in setting the intention to show gratitude, humility, and solidarity in standing with Indigenous peoples across our state throughout the year and through our lives.
For those of us who come from non-Indigenous backgrounds, we have a lot to learn from those who have the deep lived wisdom and knowledge of land and ecosystems relationships we are all part of. It is our responsibility to listen and to learn and follow the leadership of our state’s Native Nations, tribal elders, and young leaders.
We are proud to be led by Alyssa Macy, a citizen of the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs. We know that there is still much work to be done by all of us at WEC to unlearn the limiting and unjust ways of white supremacy.
If you do not know whose ancestral lands you are currently living or working on, this thoughtfully created online map tells you on whose native land you currently reside.
Below is a list of resources, including educational readings, podcasts and digital media, as well as upcoming events to engage with not only on Indigenous Peoples Day, but to cultivate a consistent practice of being in community and solidarity with Indigenous communities. (Please note that this is not an exhaustive list.)
- Indigenous Tribes of Washington State: learn about all federally recognized tribes in Washington State. Note that there are many more tribes than those that are federally recognized, including the Chinook and Duwamish tribes.
- All My Relations: a podcast hosted by Matika Wilbur and Adrienne Keene that touches on issues important to Native peoples today.
- Yehaw Indigenous Creatives Collective: dedicated to highlighting Indigenous artists and creative people
- Since Time Immemorial: Tribal Sovereignty In Washington State: a curriculum developed and approved by all Washington State tribes. It has been required in all public schools since 2015. This curriculum contains a wealth of resources.
- Our Northwest Opportunity Stories: from Alysia and Elke Littleleaf (Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs), Emily Washines (Yakama Nation) and Lucinda George Simpson (Nez Perce Tribe)
- The Tribal Legacy Project: explore the involvement of Native Tribes throughout the Lewis and Clark expedition
- The Treaty Trail: familiarize yourself with treaty rights and their critical role in tribal sovereignty today.
And here are some events to consider attending:
- Indigenous People’s Day featuring Matika Wilbur and the Blackhawk Singers at Western Washington University, Oct 11, 11am-1pm
- Indigenous People Festival presented by Festal at Seattle Center, Oct 12-15
- Indigenous People’s Day Celebration March, Oct 11, 9-11am
- Indigenous People’s Day presented by Daybreak Star, Oct 11, 2pm
- Indigenous People’s Day Events hosted by the Office of Tribal Relations and Native American Programs at Washington State University, Oct 12, 12-6pm